Two Chicago Construction Firms Fined $280,200 for Asbestos Hazards

T2 Construction oversaw the activities of demolition contractor Gramek Construction, including the removal of floor tile and pipe insulation that allegedly contained asbestos.

OSHA has cited two Chicago companies, T2 G.C. LLC, which operates as T2 Construction, and Gramek Construction Inc., for failing to protect workers from asbestos hazards at a job site in May. T2 Construction faces proposed fines of $141,600 and Gramek Construction faces proposed fines of $138,600, for a combined total of $280,200.

T2 Construction was the general contractor at the Chicago job site, which involved a 90-year-old, 80,000-square-foot building. T2 oversaw the activities of demolition contractor Gramek Construction, including the removal of floor tile and pipe insulation that allegedly contained asbestos.

"Failing to conduct an asbestos assessment and require workers to wear personal protective equipment when working with material potentially contaminated by asbestos shows a blatant disregard for their health and safety," said OSHA Regional Administrator Michael Connors in Chicago. "Safe and healthful working conditions should be paramount on every job site, and OSHA is committed to protecting workers, especially when employers fail to do so."

T2 Construction was cited for two willful health violations including failing to have a competent person conduct an initial assessment prior to commencing Class I and Class II asbestos work, and failing to ensure compliance with the asbestos standard as the general contractor.

Additionally, T2 Construction was cited for 14 serious violations involving asbestos control procedures, such as failing to conduct air and exposure monitoring, failing to follow specific engineering controls and practices, failing to remove tile intact, allowing dry sweeping of dust and residue, failing to provide hygiene facilities for workers conducting asbestos removal, and failing to ensure that employees wore adequate personal protective clothing while performing asbestos work.

Gramek Construction was cited for one willful health violation for failing to have a competent person conduct an initial assessment prior to commencing Class I and Class II asbestos work. The company also was cited for 24 serious health and safety violations, 18 of which involved violations of asbestos control procedures such as failing to conduct air and exposure monitoring, failing to follow specific engineering controls and practices, allowing dry sweeping of dust and residue, failing to implement a respiratory protection program, failing to provide hygiene facilities for workers conducting asbestos removal, and failing to ensure that employees wore adequate personal protective clothing for asbestos work. The remaining six serious safety violations were cited for lack of fall protection and training as well as electrical hazards.

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