For Immediate Release - April 07, 2014

Abatement Contractor MJ Environmental Fined $24,400 for Asbestos Violations in Pittsfield Building

BOSTON - The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) has assessed a $24,400 penalty against MJ Environmental, Inc. for violating the state asbestos regulations. The contractor was cited for improper removal of asbestos material at a property on Bartlett Street in Pittsfield.

In March 2012, MassDEP discovered the violations during an inspection of asbestos abatement work that had been conducted on a vacant building located on 149-153 Bartlett Street in Pittsfield. During the inspection, MassDEP found that MJ Environmental had removed asbestos transite siding from the building without instituting the proper asbestos-handling procedures.

In a consent order, MJ Environmental was required to pay $10,000 of the penalty; MassDEP has agreed to suspend the remaining $14,400 provided that the company complies with the terms of the order and remains in compliance with the state asbestos handling regulations for two years.

"Asbestos contractors must be held accountable for the protection of the public health and welfare of the general public," said Michael Gorski, director of MassDEP's Western Regional Office in Springfield. "MassDEP will take firm enforcement action against non-compliant contractors to protect public health and level the playing field with the vast majority of contractors who do comply with the regulations."

Property owners or contractors with questions about asbestos-containing materials, notification requirements, proper removal, handling, packaging, storage and disposal procedures, or the asbestos regulations are encouraged to contact the appropriate MassDEP regional office for assistance. More information on asbestos, including health effects, can be obtained from MassDEP's web site: http://www.mass.gov/dep/air/asbguid.htm

MassDEP is responsible for ensuring clean air and water, safe management and recycling of solid and hazardous wastes, timely cleanup of hazardous waste sites and spills and the preservation of wetlands and coastal resources.

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