The Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office recently obtained a preliminary injunction against Clean Air Environmental, Inc. for alleged violations related to the abatement, storage, and disposal of asbestos waste. In June, the Attorney General’s Office sued the company for allegedly performing unsafe, illegal asbestos work at a total of eight different locations in Boston, Quincy, Brighton, Charlestown, Cambridge, West Roxbury, and Brookline, including work on homes, condominiums, a school, and near a child care center. The preliminary injunction orders the company to cease all asbestos abatement work and prohibits them from storing additional asbestos waste until its Hyde Park facility is cleared of asbestos-containing materials, waste oil, and other hazardous waste.
The Attorney General’s Complaint also alleges that Clean Air Environmental illegally stored asbestos waste in ripped, unmarked, and unsecured bags that they stored in trucks, a van, and a trailer at their Hyde Park facility. Further, the Complaint alleges that the company failed to documents where it disposed of some of the illegally-stored asbestos waste materials.
As part of the injunction, the Superior Court imposed a $50,000 attachment on Clean Air Environmental’s assets to ensure that the company has funding to properly and completely clear its Hyde Park facility of asbestos waste. If the company is found liable for the allegations in the Attorney General’s Complaint, it faces civil penalties of up to $25,000 per day for each violation of the law.
The Attorney General’s Office has recently made a push to make asbestos safe disposal and storage practices a priority, as Attorney General Healey issued her office’s “Healthy Buildings, Healthy Air” Initiative in March of 2017. The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has strict laws regarding safe removal of asbestos-containing materials from jobsites, monitoring the jobsites to ensure that proper procedures are followed, disposing of the materials, and notifying the Commonwealth of the location of the materials. Various violations in all of these processes led to the penalties in this case.
As this latest example of the Attorney General cracking down on the safe handling and disposal of asbestos-containing materials shows, contractors, landlords, and property owners alike must be absolutely sure that they are adhering to the regulations regarding safe handling practices for asbestos. CMBG3 Law LLC has represented clients in toxic torts matters, especially with respect to asbestos, for many years. We provide the most current legal advice to our clients by staying on top of developments in science, medicine, and regulations regarding a wide variety of substances and products used by consumers every day.
If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact John Gardella (email him or 617-936-4353, ext. 204).