Michigan Man Charged with Asbestos Violations

A 100 year old school was an eyesore to one Michigan community and needed to be completely demolished. A local wrecking company in the vicinity got the job. However, it was reported from the court documents that the owner of the wrecking company knew there were indications of asbestos within the building. He was cited for failing to comply with safety guidelines during the demolition and disposal process. Improper demolition and disposal procedures can possibly endanger the lives of a surrounding community. In Federal court proceedings, the owner of the company pled guilty to the “Clean Air Act” violation. He told a reporter that he did not intend to spread asbestos and was not trying to save money in the demolition process. The company’s owner did not blame the “Clean Air Act” violation on his employees. Instead, he stated during an interview, that he made a mistake and takes full responsibility for the actions of his company. He also stated that no danger was inflicted upon the community because it was unpopulated at the time of the demolition. The wrecking company owner also claimed that families within that particular school district live many miles away and would not be affected by the demolition. A local reporter spoke to a neighbor who lives less than 100 yards away from the old school with her grandchildren. She said that she observed the demolition process from her property and described the workers as being worried and appeared to moving very quickly. The grandmother stated she was never notified prior to the demolition and there was not an indication of any cautionary measures taken. The neighbor thought the company avoided proper disposal of the asbestos to save money. She also said that if the owner of the company had complied with proper regulations, it would have cost him money out of pocket. Since there are many homes in the neighborhood that are occupied by families with children, she is worried about the impact the dangerous chemicals will have on the children who continued to play outside during the demolition process. Court documents revealed that the owner was not present during the demolition. The court documents also indicated that the demolition crew was not experienced in proper asbestos removal. The demolition crew loaded up the busted debris on the back of a truck and then transported the debris to a landfill. The landfill would not accept hazardous materials. An inspector from the “Department of Environmental Quality” was at the landfill at the time. He became suspicious of the truck and decided to investigate the vehicle. Tests revealed that the truck contained asbestos. On May 3rd, 2012 a federal judge will be making the decision whether the company owner should receive fines, imprisonment, or both. Reference:
  • MSNBC Staff Writer. (April 22, 2012). “Bloomfield Hills man charged with asbestos violations.” Retrieved on April 23, 2012, from Detroit MSNBC.
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