NEW YORK An Ohio court
has fined Arthur David Sugar Sr. and several of his affiliated
companies $850,000 for the improper demolition of the former
Weirton Steel Corp. facility in Steubenville, Ohio, which
resulted in asbestos contamination.
Sugar purchased the property
from the former Weirton Steel, which filed for bankruptcy
protection in 2003 (
amm.com, May 19, 2003), with the intention of
demolishing the facility for scrapping purposes. Demolition
began in 2004, according to court documents.
Employees complained about
asbestos violations in 2005, and officials found that the
carcinogenic material was being disturbed and allowed to float
in the air.
The demolition work "was
conducted in a cavalier disregard of the asbestos present,"
Judge Joseph J. Bruzzese Jr. wrote in his court order. "Workers
did not have protective gear, and asbestos from pipes and other
installations was scattered everywhere."
The violations were "serious
departures from asbestos regulating requirements, causing great
risk of harm and death to many people," the judge said.
The case was filed on behalf of
the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, a spokesman for the
Ohio Attorney Generals Office said.
The sanctions were imposed by
the Jefferson County, Ohio, Court of Common Pleas against Sugar
and Petersburg, Ohio-based David Sugar Excavating LLC; Honey
Creek Contracting Co. Inc., New Middletown, Ohio; Excavation
Technologies Inc., Petersburg; and ADS Leasing Corp.,
Wilmington, Del. The attorney generals spokesman said
Sugar owned all of the companies.
In 2011, Sugar had been
sentenced to 36 months of probation and fined $10,000 for
asbestos discharges, and Honey Creek had been fined
Sugar couldnt be reached