Sept. 3, 2019#19-020
Tumwater –A Bellingham-based property management company has been cited by the Washington Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) for multiple serious safety and health violations, most of which involve improper handling of asbestos and lead. As a result of the violations, Daylight Properties is facing fines totaling $185,600.
L&I has cited the company for 33 serious and six general violations. The highest single fine was $48,000 for failure to obtain a good faith inspection before beginning asbestos removal work. The amount was based on a $600 per day fine over an 80-day time period.
Other violations included not having asbestos removal certification, not having an asbestos “competent person” on site, workers not being certified for asbestos work, and not sufficiently wetting asbestos-containing materials during removal.
“Improper and unsafe lead and asbestos removal is a serious problem in Washington,” said Anne Soiza, L&I’s assistant director for the Division of Occupational Safety and Health. “This company renovates old buildings which often have asbestos and lead- containing materials. There are laws in place, and we expect them to be followed to prevent exposing workers, tenants and the general public to these hazardous materials.”
Asbestos is extremely hazardous and can cause potentially fatal diseases like asbestosis, mesothelioma and lung cancer. Lead exposures have serious and permanent health effects on children and adults. Only a certified contractor who follows the specific related safety and health rules may remove and dispose of lead and asbestos-containing materials.
It’s all-too-common for contractors to conduct asbestos removal activities without the required certification, proper training, processes and equipment. It’s important for homeowners to know that if they plan to hire a contractor to remodel or renovate their home, they are required to get a good faith inspection before work begins. If asbestos is present, the contractor must be certified.
L&I has a list of certified contractors. It’s important to refer to that list because some unscrupulous contractors continue to advertise asbestos removal work even after they’ve been cited and decertified.
For some companies that do high-volume work, such as home or property flippers, even large fines are not a sufficient deterrent. Homeowners and property owners should be cautious when hiring contractors.
Daylight Properties has 15 business days to appeal the citations.
Penalty money paid as a result of a citation is placed in the workers’ compensation supplemental pension fund, helping injured workers and families of those who have died on the job.For a copy of the citations, please contact Public Affairs at 360-902-5413.
For more information contact Frank Ameduri, L&I Public Affairs, 360-902-5413.
Sometimes hiring a “certified” asbestos abatement contractor is not enough to protect your employees and the public.
PacRim has years of expertise to help you get your project identified, planned and executed. We can ensure your abatement contractor is completing the work in an efficient and legal fashion.
We have the experience and team to keep you, your employees and the public safe.
WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) today issued a memorandum outlining the initial enforcement of the standard for respirable crystalline silica in general industry and maritime. Most provisions of the standard become enforceable on June 23, 2018. The standard establishes a new 8-hour time-weighted average permissible exposure limit, action level, and associated ancillary requirements.
Full details here: https://www.osha.gov/dsg/topics/silicacrystalline/gi_maritime.html
PacRim was pleased to be part of the “Dream Team” that helped facilitate this project.
Work to restore the Otis Hotel in downtown Spokane was stopped this month after air quality inspectors found signs of asbestos and no sign the developer had hired a certified contractor to deal with the cancer-causing material.
Notices posted March 9 on the doors of the old hotel show an “order of immediate restraint,” which halts all work as the state Department of Labor and Industries investigates if proper handling and disposal of any asbestos-laden materials has been done.
Jeff Lewis our President and founder has been accepted and will join the Spring Class of 2018 of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Program. This is the national program designed by Babson College, the nation’s top-ranked entrepreneurship school, that provides small businesses with an intensive 4 month, online and on-campus, program to develop practical skills that small business managers can immediately put into action within their company. The skills learned during the program will include how to recognize new opportunities, embrace practices that increase business growth and ultimately develop a customized growth plan for their business.
As a part of being accepted into this program, Jeff will be attending the 10,000 Small Businesses Summit: The Big Power of Small Business event on February 13 and 14, 2018 in Washington DC. Some of the speakers of the event include Lloyd Blankfein, Michael Bloomberg, and Warren Buffet, along with some of our elected officials who are involved in the support and development of small businesses.
Tumwater – A Seattle hotel owner who knew his building contained asbestos decided to cut corners and save money by removing it using untrained workers. As a result, the Seattle Pacific Hotel has been cited for multiple egregious safety and health violations and faces $355,000 in fines for exposing the workers to asbestos hazards.
The Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) has cited the hotel for a dozen “willful” violations, the most severe, for knowingly exposing workers to asbestos during the hotel remodeling.
“It’s unconscionable that anyone would knowingly expose untrained and unprotected workers to asbestos. It’s an extremely hazardous material that’s notorious for causing cancer and other serious health issues,” said Anne Soiza, L&I’s assistant director for the Division of Occupational Safety and Health.
L&I began its investigation last July and immediately issued a stop-work order when it discovered that asbestos removal was being done by workers who were not trained or certified to safely perform the work.
During the lobby renovation, an asbestos-abatement contractor had discovered that much of the ceiling was originally constructed with cement-asbestos-board. The L&I investigation found that the hotel owner, Raj Nariya, had gotten an estimate from the certified asbestos-abatement contractor who discovered the issue, but didn’t hire that firm. Instead, the owner had untrained employees of a roofing contractor do the work without letting them know the ceiling contained asbestos.
Asbestos is extremely hazardous and can cause potentially fatal diseases like asbestosis, mesothelioma and lung cancer. Removal and disposal of asbestos-containing building materials must be done by a certified abatement contractor who follows safety and health rules to protect workers and the public.
The L&I investigation found a total of 12 willful workplace health violations related to removal of the asbestos. Ten of the violations carried a penalty of $35,000 each, the maximum amount allowed for an employer of its size.
The violations cited were for exposing workers to asbestos, failing to provide respiratory protection, leaving asbestos debris on site and other safety and health issues. The hotel owner was also cited for an additional willful-general violation for not taking a pre-removal air sample before removing the asbestos-materials. That violation came with a $5,000 fine.
The employer has 15 business days to appeal the citation.
Penalty money paid as a result of a citation is placed in the workers’ compensation supplemental pension fund, helping injured workers and families of those who have died on the job.
For a copy of the citations, please contact Public Affairs at 360-902-5413.
For media information: Elaine.Fischer@Lni.wa.gov or 360-902-5413.
PacRim is proud of Amazon in their support of Mary’s Place. We are happy to be part of the team, and have assisted Mary’s place in their current facilities and look forward to helping them expand their programs and services and the good work they are doing.
News article in the Tacoma News Tribune regarding a project we recently completed for Pierce County.