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NY developer who exposed construction workers to lead and asbestos dangers to pay 700K in penalties

Harlem Valley Psychiatric Hospital

Picture source: Google Map

A NY developer who exposed construction workers to lead and asbestos hazard during the renovation and the clean up of an abandoned psychiatric hospital Upstate New York  settled with the US Labor Department. As part of the settlement, the developer committed to enhance safeguard for the employees renovating the site and pay a $700k fine.

Dover Greens LLC, formerly known as Olivet Management LLC was cited in 2014 for 45 willfull violations after the company knowingly exposed its own construction workers and the construction workers hired by 13 other contractors  to lead and asbestos hazard while cleaning and  renovating the former Harlem Valley Psychiatric Center in Dover Plains.

At the time of the clean up Olivet Management never informed its employees or the other contractors’ employees about the presence of asbestos and lead despite being aware of it. Therefore no proper training or information on the hazard of asbestos and lead was providing to the employees who cleaned up the place with none of the safety equipments required by OSHA for this type of work. Olivet Management knowingly put construction workers at risk of neurological and respiratory problems caused by unsafe exposure to asbestos and lead.

In the settlement Dover Greeens agreed to:

  • Hire a contractor specialized in cleaning building with asbestos and lead
  • Hire a safety consulting firm to monitor the project
  • Make sure all construction workers are proprely trained about the dangers of asbestos and lead exposure and that onsite supervisors and foremen have completed the OSHA 30-hour course before the work starts
  • Make sure hired contractors have documented training on working safely with asbestos and lead and adhere to OSHA standards
  • Not to oppose worker compensation claims related to illness from asbestos and lead exposure
  • Provide construction workers with information on the possibility to bring claims under the state workers compensation program

Read the OSHA Press release