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Vermont Real Estate and Demolition Companies Face Fines for Clean Air Violations

Release Date: 08/06/2009
Contact Information: David Deegan, (617) 918-1010

(Boston, Mass. August 6, 2009) - A Vermont real estate and demolition company together face a penalty of nearly $30,000 for alleged violations of the Clean Air Act and the National Emission Standard for Hazardous Air Pollutants for Asbestos.

In March 2008, the JIDDU/SIDDU Trust of Colchester, Vt. and CRC Excavating, LLC of Middlesex, Vt. demolished buildings on two residential lots in Essex Junction, at 231 and 235 Pearl Street, as part of a commercial project to build a three-story, 35-unit apartment building on the combined lot.

EPA’s complaint alleges that JIDDU/SIDDU and CRC failed to thoroughly inspect for asbestos prior to demolishing the buildings and failed to provide EPA with prior written notification of its intent to demolish as is required under Federal asbestos demolition standards. The two companies could face a fine of $29,308 for the alleged violations.

Approximately 75,106 pounds (approximately 120 cubic yards) of demolition debris was removed from the properties and disposed of at a waste transfer station as non-asbestos containing waste without proper inspection. Available information indicates that JIDDU/SIDDU tested limited debris remaining after the demolition, but did not identify any remaining asbestos on the property.

The federal Clean Air Act and the National Emission Standard for Hazardous Air Pollutants for Asbestos (Asbestos NESHAP) require owners and operators of demolition and renovation operations to follow certain inspection and notification requirements prior to beginning such operations, and to abide by specific work practice and waste disposal requirements when the owners and operators identify the presence of regulated asbestos-containing material.

These violations of the Asbestos NESHAP could have posed significant health risks to the surrounding community, as well as to the employees conducting the demolition, since there was no evaluation of any potential asbestos risks that may have been raised from the demolition work. However, at this time, EPA is not aware of any specific harm caused by the violations alleged in this case.

EPA’s asbestos regulations help protect workers and the public from inhaling airborne asbestos fibers. Breathing asbestos fibers can cause lung cancer, asbestosis, and mesothelioma, a cancer of the lining of the chest and the abdominal cavity.

More information:

- Enforcement of the Clean Air Act in New England (http://www.epa.gov/ne/enforcement/air/index.html)

- Asbestos Information (http://www.epa.gov/asbestos/)

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