- The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited three commercial real estate renovation companies, all owned by the same individual, for exposing workers to asbestos at a residential apartment under renovation in San Antonio, TX, and has fined them a total of $112,000.
- After a May 29 inspection of the apartment building work site, OSHA cited FBZ Broadway, LP, ($14,000) and Roscoe Properties, Inc., ($63,000) for one willful violation each for failing to determine the quantity and location of asbestos. OSHA cited One Eighty Construction, Inc., ($35,000) for one willful violation for failing to ensure that workers followed asbestos removal practices.
- According to OSHA, on April 28, the agency had cited FBZ Broadway for the same violation. All three companies, according to, are owned by Jason Berkowitz and employ a total of 261 workers between them.
"This commercial building renovator is responsible for protecting workers from asbestos hazards and failed to do so, despite previous citations for asbestos exposure. There is simply no excuse for continuing to expose workers to this danger," Alejandro Porter, OSHA's area director in the San Antonio Office, said in a statement. "Exposure to asbestos can lead to lung disease and cancer years after initial exposure."
Michigan OSHA recently fined a contractor in Detroit $265,000, primarily for asbestos removal violations, and OSHA fined a contractor in Illinois $1.8 million for willfully exposing workers to asbestos.
Next year, OSHA could raise fines as much as 80% or more as a result of a provision in the latest budget bill directing the agency to raise its fines in line with the Consumer Price Index for the first time since 1990.