Saturday, March 28, 2020

Idaho Transportation Department settles with EPA over asbestos regulation violations

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently reached a settlement with the Idaho Transportation Department (ITD), which allegedly failed to undertake asbestos inspections at a building demolition site and didn't report the demolition to the agency.

The building, near Priest River in the northern area of the state’s Panhandle, was destroyed in November 2014. After the ITD’s demolition of the structure, a consultant found a range of 2 percent to 55 percent asbestos on materials in a debris pile.

According to federal asbestos regulations, which are intended to protect the public from health issues such as lung disease, lung cancer, mesothelioma and asbestosis, building owners must inspect buildings marked for demolition and report the planned project to the EPA. 

"Despite assurance from ITD that they will closely follow asbestos regulations and protect their workers, we are still issuing penalties on what should be straightforward project management," Ed Kowalski, director of EPA’s Office of Enforcement, said. "We’re confident that our enforcement and compliance program will ultimately help them to realize the value of doing the right thing."

As part of the settlement terms, the ITD will pay a fine of more than $50,000.

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U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

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