ISHN

Construction contractors fined $324,000 for asbestos exposure violations (1/2)

January 2, 2008

Two construction contractors — one based in the U.K. and one in Texas — have been cited by OSHA for 12 safety violations for asbestos exposure at a military housing construction site at the federal White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico. Proposed fines total $324,000.

Balfour Beatty Construction LLC, a general construction contractor from the U.K., was cited for three alleged willful and two alleged serious violations, with $179,000 in proposed fines. The willful violations are for failing: to assure that C.F. Jordan, the subcontractor, was in compliance with OSHA's asbestos standards; to conduct an assessment of asbestos operations; and to have a competent person oversee work involving asbestos. The serious violations include failing to label asbestos-containing materials and to store excavated asbestos in closed, covered containers.

C.F. Jordan was hit with $145,000 in proposed fines for two alleged willful and five alleged serious violations of OSHA’s asbestos standards.

OSHA began an inspection July 21 after receiving a referral from the New Mexico Environment Department alleging employees were removing underground concrete pipe containing asbestos from a military housing site without using appropriate protective clothing or a protective enclosure to contain the airborne asbestos.