Employees of A2 Environmental Services face significant risk of malignant mesothelioma after having been ordered to remove asbestos in an unsafe way. The safety concerns were revealed during court proceedings against the company’s owner, 45-year-old Stephanie Laskin of Newburgh, New York. Ms. Laskin pled guilty last week to illegal removal of asbestos that violated the Clean Air Act and endangered her employees.
Asbestos Exposure Leads to Mesothelioma and Other Serious Diseases
Exposure to asbestos has been directly linked to malignant mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, asbestosis and other serious diseases. Once the mineral’s dangers became clear its use was drastically curtailed in the United States and strict regulations were implemented to control its handling. Despite this, companies like Laskin’s ignore safety rules, putting their employees and passersby at risk.
A2 Environmental Services advertises asbestos removal services based on having received special asbestos abatement training. Despite this, she and others within her company ordered workers to forego proper asbestos removal handling in the face of contract deadlines. They threatened employees’ jobs if they did not cut corners, violate their training, and put theselves in danger.
Asbestos Company Contracted to Remove Asbestos From Former IBM Site
The mesothelioma risk to employees was at its worst between 2015 and 2016, when the company had contracted to remove over 400,000 square feet of asbestos-containing material. According to the guilty plea, Ms. Raskin and the company’s supervisors told workers to forego the wetting of asbestos-contaminated material that specifically prevents asbestos fibers from becoming airborne. When the workers objected out of fear of mesothelioma risk and violating the law, they were told that they had a choice of following directions or losing their jobs.
Foregoing the wetting of asbestos-containing materials during the abatement process put both employees and anybody in the vicinity of the building at risk of inhaling carcinogenic fibers and eventually developing mesothelioma. It also represents a violation of the Clean Air Act’s “work practice standards.” Their process led to the site being identified as contaminated by municipal authorities and the Environmental Protection Agency. Cleanup is anticipated to cost millions. Ms. Laskin faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison.
If you or someone you love has a known exposure to asbestos, you may be at risk for malignant mesothelioma. For information on the resources available to you, contact the Patient Advocates at Mesothelioma.net today at 1-800-692-8608.