Repair work on fire-damaged apartments exposes asbestos

Print
Email
|

by GARY CHITTIM / KING 5 News

Bio | Email | Follow: @gchittimK5

KING5.com

Posted on September 10, 2013 at 7:33 PM

Updated Tuesday, Sep 10 at 7:40 PM

Repair work being done on a fire-damaged apartment complex in Seattle has exposed a possible danger - asbestos inside the damaged units.

Firefighters responded to a two alarm fire in the 1100 block of South Massachusetts in July after an explosion ripped through one apartment and set others on fire.
  
Paul Larson says since then, people may be living with asbestos in the air, an independent investigation he paid for found it in his apartment.

He believes the apartment managers have been ignoring the laws protecting residents from asbestos that was released during the fire.

Apartment managers won't confirm it, but apparently several people have moved back in since the fire. The contractor in charge of cleaning up the damage and protecting the residents arrived during our interview.

"All of our process and procedures have been tested, have been certified The Department of Labor and Industries and the department of Puget Sound Air Quality." Said Ted Sitterley, V.P., Project Management, Belfor USA

Sitterley said the asbestos contamination is limited to areas that have been sealed off to protect other residents who have been fully notified of the process.

None of the residents we spoke to knew there was asbestos work underway.

Work is underway to clear the debris and remove the asbestos, but Paul Larson says the contamination is inside his apartment and he'll pay for his neighbors to check for it inside theirs.

KING 5 did a check with Washington State Labor and Industries. Investigators say they found the contractors are following the law, with a few exceptions. they were fined for having an untrained worker on the project.
  
Larson says an outside company will send an inspector to check for asbestos on Wednesday.

Print
Email
|