Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey has announced that Dellbrook Construction LLC and A-Best Abatement Inc. will pay $215,000 to settle allegations regarding illegal asbestos work at development projects in the Bay State.
The consent judgment settles a lawsuit filed by the AG’s office, which alleged that Dellbrook, located in Quincy, Massachusetts, and A-Best, headquartered in Salem, New Hampshire, failed to comply with the state’s clean air law and regulations governing the handling of asbestos at construction projects.
“Companies must ensure that any construction and demolition work involving asbestos is done in a safe and legal way to protect workers and the public,” states Healey.
The AG’s office alleges the defendants caused or allowed the removal of asbestos-containing materials from the basement of a five-story building in Lowell without sealing or properly ventilating work areas or following other practices required by law to minimize asbestos exposure.
The defendants also allegedly left asbestos visible in a basement area and stored dry, broken asbestos-containing material in torn, unsealed bags in a waste trailer in a parking lot behind the building. The AG’s lawsuit further alleges that Dellbrook demolished and removed asbestos-containing materials from other areas of the project without surveying those areas for asbestos or notifying the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP).
According to the complaint, Dellbrook also polluted the air with asbestos during construction at Harbor Place, a Haverhill, Massachusetts, development project, by causing or allowing an underground asbestos-containing pipe to be crushed into small, dry pieces and scattered in open air around the property. Dellbrook allegedly failed to follow any of the required work practices or notify MassDEP before demolishing the pipe and endangering health and safety.