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U.S. EPA fines two South Lake Tahoe businesses $50,000 for asbestos removal

Release Date: 10/7/2004
Contact Information: Francisco Arcaute, U.S. EPA, (213) 244-1815

LOS ANGELES - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently settled a case with two South Lake Tahoe business owners for $50,000 for improper asbestos removal, a violation of the Clean Air Act.

Francis Lennon, owner of Mulligan's Irish Pub, and Mira Pradip and Thakor Patel owner's of the South Lake Tahoe Super 8 Motel were cited for failing to notify officials of asbestos removal,and improper removal and disposal of asbestos containing waste during renovation work in 2001.

"Asbestos is a hazard if not handled properly,", said Deborah Jordan, director of the EPA's Air Division. "The EPA and the California Air Resources Board will continue to do inspections and enforce any asbestos removal violations to insure companies follow the rules to protect public health."

During the remodeling of Mulligan's Irish Pub in July 2001, the EPA and the California Air Resources Board observed improper disturbance, removal and disposal of asbestos ceiling material. Immediately after the inspection, the EPA and the Air Board required the owner of Mulligan's, Francis Lennon, and the owners of the motel, Mira Pradip and Thakor Patel, to clean up the asbestos materials.

The inspectors cited the owners for several violations of federal air requirements, including the failure to notify EPA of asbestos removal activities, emissions of asbestos materials to the air and improper disposal of asbestos wastes. During the renovation, asbestos material was also found outside in the open air, exposing the general public and workers to the materials.

Asbestos fibers released to the air are considered a hazardous air pollutant by the EPA. Potential health effects from the inhalation of asbestos fibers include lung disease and cancer.

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