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$40 Million Lawsuit Alleges Employer Covered-Up Asbestos in Apartments

 

Employees allege in a $40 million lawsuit that the managers of a Southwest Portland Apartment Complex endangered them by exposing them to asbestos even though constructions crews had warned about the presence of asbestos.

Details of the $40 Million Asbestos Lawsuit

According to reports, two former employees of Tandem Property Management filed a lawsuit Monday. They claim they were fired by the company in retaliation for knowing about the cover-up of the presence of asbestos at the Commons at Sylvan Highland Apartments.

Thomas Clarey, the President of the company, did not immediately return messages for comment.

A lawyer for the plaintiffs said he does not believe the residents of 1380 S.W. 66th Ave have been notified about the asbestos.

The lawsuit claims that while crews were remodeling five vacant apartment in May, they discovered what appeared to be asbestos. The lawsuit continues to allege that the company’s president was furious. He visited the site, “yelling that there was no asbestos and that they all needed to get back to work,” the suit says.

Three of the workers were removed from the job and within a few days were fired because management thought “they were ‘loose cannons’ that might call the Oregon Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) about the potential asbestos,” the suit says.

According to the suit, in June management directed a new crew to carry debris through the building’s halls and down its elevator. This crew also discovered an indication of asbestos. Someone on the crew tested a sample, which tested positive for the dangerous fibers.

The crew notified management, but the next day, management told two employees to remove the asbestos-laden sheetrock without proper protective gear or training, the suit claims.

Michael Fuller, a Portland attorney who filed the lawsuit, represents Khataun Thompson, an apartment groundskeeper who was asked to work on one of the renovation teams. The suit alleges that Thompson was removed from the project and subsequently fired in July because he knew about the asbestos, and because he is black.

The suits says that Thompson filed an OSHA complaint about the asbestos. An OSHA spokesman couldn’t immediately be reached for more information.

Fuller also is representing Thompson’s fiancee, Alyssa DeWeese, a leasing agent who contends she was fired in July as retaliation after she found out about the asbestos.

What is Asbestos?

Asbestos has known carcinogen for a long time, and is believed to be so dangerous that even brief exposures can develop into life-threatening diseases decades later. Public pressure has mounted in recent years to tighten controls, and government regulations outline specific procedures for properly removing asbestos, which can be time-consuming and expensive.

Government officials take the proper handling of asbestos so seriously that in recent years, at least two Oregon businessmen have been convicted of crimes for their mishandling of asbestos removal projects.

In 2012, developer Daniel Desler was convicted for negligently releasing asbestos into the air as he tried to redevelop an old sawmill in Sweet Home into a housing development.

In 2015, real estate agent Bill Gaffney was convicted of recklessly endangering others after hiring untrained day laborers to remove asbestos-laden materials from a Southeast house he was remodeling.

Contact an Experienced Workplace Injury Attorney

If you or a loved one were injured on the job, contact Thomas J. Henry. Workplace accident victims deserve quality, dynamic representation from attorneys with the experience and legal resources to properly develop their case. Oftentimes, workplace injuries are severe and debilitating and put individuals out of work for an extended period of time.

Our work accident lawyers will take immediate action on your case and make sure you are comfortable and informed throughout the entire legal process. Contact us today for a free case review. Our firm has offices in Corpus ChristiSan Antonio, Austin, and Houston, serving clients across Texas and nationwide.

Two Workers Die At JW Marriott Construction Site Near Disney World

Two men are dead after falling six stories from a JW Marriott hotel under construction near Disney World on Wednesday morning when a scaffold collapsed, according to Orange County Fire Rescue.

Details of the Construction Accident

The report from the Orange County Sheriff’s Office says that the workers were pouring concrete on the seventh floor of the hotel when the scaffolding collapsed. They died immediately after hitting the ground.

The accident occurred just before 5 a.m. A report by the Associated Press revealed that about 18 construction workers were present at the time of the collapse.

The men were identified as 34-year-old Lorenzo Zavala, a former vice president at S&Z Concrete from Plant City, and 46-year-old Jerry Bell, a 46-year-old father and stepfather who lives in Seffner.

According to Fire Rescue, a third worker was also involved in the incident, but managed to hang on and only received minor injuries.

The cause of the scaffolding collapse has not yet been identified, but the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Orange County Sheriff’s Office will be conducting an investigation.

The JW Marriott under construction is located at 14900 Chelonia Parkway, 1.6 miles from Walt Disney World Resort, but the hotel is not on Disney property. The property, described as the Bonnet Creek Resort in Orange County property records, is owned by DCS Real Estate Investments, a West Palm Beach company.

According to a July 2017 Orlando Sentinel report, engineering firm Kimley-Horn filed an application with Orange County DCS’ behalf to build a 516-room JW Marriott at Bonnet Creek on Chelonia Parkway.

A DCS manager has said that the company’s corporate policy prohibits commenting to the media. A phone representative at Kimley-Horn gave a similar response, saying that no one was available to comment on the accident.

Construction Accident Statistics

The following information was provided by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA):

  • 4,836 workers were killed on the job in 2015. This averages to more than 93 deaths a week or more than 13 deaths every day.
  • Of the 4,379 worker fatalities that occurred in private industry, 937 were associated with construction.
  • The leading causes of construction-related deaths are:
    • Falls
    • Struck by object
    • Electrocutions
    • Caught-In/Between

Contact an Experienced Construction Accident Attorney

If you or a loved one sustained a serious injury in a construction accident, contact Thomas J. Henry. Accidents that occur on construction sites can cause severe, life-altering injuries, causing physical, emotional, and financial pain. Our experienced construction injury attorneys work diligently to make sure our clients are comfortable and informed throughout the entire process. At Thomas J. Henry, we have a record of achieving real results for our clients.

Let us assist you with your construction accident injury. Our firm has offices in Corpus ChristiSan Antonio, and Houston, serving clients across Texas and nationwide. Call us today for a free case review.

Worker in Fatal Accident Near Disney World

A worker at a facility near Disney World is dead after falling into a vat, say authorities.

Details of the Worker’s Death

The 61-year-old was emptying oil and grease from a tractor-trailer when he fell into the vat of oil early Wednesday, says the Orange County Sherriff’s Office.

According to the CBS News, witnesses attempted to free the man from the vat of oil, but were not able to rescue him. He was subsequently consumed by the flames and slipped further into the vat.

The Reedy Creek Fire Department recovered the man’s body. His name wasn’t immediately released.

Disney said the victim worked for Harvest Power, a Massachusetts-based company that specializes in converting food waste and yard waste into biofuel, compost, mulch and fertilizer.

On the Job Injury Statistics

The following information was provided by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA):

  • 5,190 work-related deaths were recorded in 2016, marking an average of more than 99 deaths a week or more than 14 deaths every day.
  • Of the 4,693 fatalities recorded in the private industry, 991 or 21.1 percent occurred in construction.
  • Among the leading causes of work-related deaths were:
    • Falls
    • Transportation accidents
    • Struck-by object
    • Electrocution
    • Caught-in/between

Contact an Experienced Work Injury Attorney

If you or a loved one were injured on the job, contact Thomas J. Henry. Workplace accident victims deserve quality, dynamic representation from attorneys with the experience and legal resources to properly develop their case. Oftentimes, workplace injuries are severe and debilitating and put individuals out of work for an extended period of time.

Our work accident lawyers will take immediate action on your case and make sure you are comfortable and informed throughout the entire legal process. Contact us today for a free case review. Our firm has offices in Corpus ChristiSan AntonioAustin, and Houston, serving clients across Texas and nationwide.

Worker Seriously Injured in Miami Beach Building Collapse

A worker was seriously injured Monday morning when a building set for demolition collapsed in Miami Beach.

Details of the Building Collapse

According to ABC Local 10, the building had a demolition permit but not an implosion permit. The latter is required for demotions in which structures are brought down rapidly by controlled explosions. However, something happened during the controlled demolition that brought the entire building down in one fell swoop.

Authorities say debris from the former Marlborough House condominium building filled the 5700 block of Collins Avenue, and police shut down nearby streets for blocks.

Authorities stated that only one person was hurt during the explosion, 46-year-old Samuel Landis. Landis was rushed to the Jackson Memorial Hospital where he is listed in critical condition.

Witnesses said a piece of debris struck Landis just below the chest, causing him to be thrown back several feet. A witness described the piece of debris as being the size of a car.

Miami Beach Fire Rescue Chief Virgil Fernandez said Allied Bean Demolition, the construction company involved, did a roll call on its employees and everyone has been accounted for. A spokesperson for Allied Bean Demolition said the company is cooperating with the investigation.

Developers had planned to demolish the Marlborough House, built in 1961, to make way for a new 19-story residential tower on the ocean-front property.

Construction Accident Statistics

The following information was provided by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA):

  • 4,836 workers were killed on the job in 2015. This averages to more than 93 deaths a week or more than 13 deaths every day.
  • Of the 4,379 worker fatalities that occurred in private industry, 937 were associated with construction.
  • The leading causes of construction-related deaths are:
    • Falls
    • Struck by object
    • Electrocutions
    • Caught-In/Between

Contact an Experienced Construction Accident Attorney

If you or a loved one sustained a serious injury in a construction accident, contact Thomas J. Henry. Accidents that occur on construction sites can cause severe, life-altering injuries, causing physical, emotional, and financial pain. Our experienced construction injury attorneys work diligently to make sure our clients are comfortable and informed throughout the entire process. At Thomas J. Henry, we have a record of achieving real results for our clients.

Let us assist you with your construction accident injury. Our firm has offices in Corpus ChristiSan Antonio, and Houston, serving clients across Texas and nationwide. Call us today for a free case review.

 

Third Worker Dies Weeks After Hospital Explosion in Texas

Two people with their hands placed on a casket at a funeral.

A third worker has died after being injured in an explosion last month at a hospital in Central Texas.

Details of the Fatal Explosion

Reports indicate that on Sunday, 30-year-old Wilber Dimas died from injuries sustained in an explosion at a central Texas hospital on June 26, 2018.

Dimas and two others, who also died, had been completing construction work at Coryell Memorial Hospital in Gatesville, Texas when the explosion occurred. A dozen other workers were also hurt in the blast, with most suffering burn injuries.

On July 1, the Gatesville police stated that the cause of the explosion had yet to be determined. However, an initial investigation indicated a construction-related incident resulted in a natural gas explosion.

On the Job Injury Statistics

The following information was provided by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA):

  • 5,190 work-related deaths were recorded in 2016, marking an average of more than 99 deaths a week or more than 14 deaths every day.
  • Of the 4,693 fatalities recorded in the private industry, 991 or 21.1 percent occurred in construction.
  • Among the leading causes of work-related deaths were:
    • Falls
    • Transportation accidents
    • Struck-by object
    • Electrocution
    • Caught-in/between

Contact an Experienced Work Injury Attorney

If you or a loved one were injured on the job, contact Thomas J. Henry. Workplace accident victims deserve quality, dynamic representation from attorneys with the experience and legal resources to properly develop their case. Oftentimes, workplace injuries are severe and debilitating and put individuals out of work for an extended period of time.

Our work accident lawyers will take immediate action on your case and make sure you are comfortable and informed throughout the entire legal process. Contact us today for a free case review. Our firm has offices in Corpus ChristiSan AntonioAustin, and Houston, serving clients across Texas and nationwide.

Disney Worker Injured, Cast Member Killed in Separate Accidents

One Disney employee was killed and another was injured as a result of two separate industrial accidents that occurred at Walt Disney World on Monday.

Disney Cast Member Fatally Struck by Utility Vehicle

According to FOX News, the first accident occurred around 9:00 am and claimed the life of cast member Juan Alberto Ojeda, 34.

Early reports suggest Ojeda was fatally injured when he became trapped under a utility vehicle that hopped a curb at 1153 Century Drive, where the Pop Century Resort is located, and landed on top of him.

Ojeda told witnesses that he could not breath before falling unconscious. Paramedics pronounced Ojeda dead at the scene.

OSHA announced that they have initiated an investigation of the incident.

Second Disney Employee Injured in Industrial Accident

The second Disney employee was injured after falling at the park’s Animal Kingdom Lodge at around 10:20 pm.

The extent of the employee’s injuries was not immediately available, though they were said to be non-life-threatening.

The worker is recovering at Orlando Regional Medical Center.

On the Job Injury Statistics

The following information was provided by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA):

  • 5,190 work-related deaths were recorded in 2016, marking an average of more than 99 deaths a week or more than 14 deaths every day.
  • Of the 4,693 fatalities recorded in the private industry, 991 or 21.1 percent occurred in construction.
  • Among the leading causes of work-related deaths were:
    • Falls
    • Transportation accidents
    • Struck-by object
    • Electrocution
    • Caught-in/between

Contact an Experienced Work Injury Attorney

If you or a loved one were injured on the job, contact Thomas J. Henry. Workplace accident victims deserve quality, dynamic representation from attorneys with the experience and legal resources to properly develop their case. Oftentimes, workplace injuries are severe and debilitating and put individuals out of work for an extended period of time.

Our work accident lawyers will take immediate action on your case and make sure you are comfortable and informed throughout the entire legal process. Contact us today for a free case review. Our firm has offices in Corpus ChristiSan AntonioAustin, and Houston, serving clients across Texas and nationwide.

1 Dead, 15 Injured in Texas Hospital Explosion

One person is confirmed dead and at least 15 others are injured following an explosion at Coryell Memorial Hospital in Gatesville, Texas on Tuesday afternoon. All those involved were construction workers working on a $42 million expansion project.

About the Gatesville Hospital Explosion

According KXXV, officials have identified the decedent as 43-year-old Michael Bruggman, of Rogers. Bruggman and all the other injured workers worked with Lochridge-Priest.

Nine of the injured victims were transported to Baylor Scott and White in Temple, with a majority of them being transferred to facilities in Austin and San Antonio. Four patients were received by Hillcrest.

One patient sustained severe burns and crush injuries to his head and chest. He is listed in extreme condition. Six others had injuries to their face and were intubated upon arrival to the hospital.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is investigating the explosion. The general contractor for the project, Adolfson & Peterson, has announced that they are fully cooperating with the agencies involved.

Within five minutes of the explosion, all the patients, staff, and visitors of Coryell Memorial Hospital had been evacuated. A call center has been set up for families with questions.

Construction Accident Statistics

The following information was provided by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA):

  • 4,836 workers were killed on the job in 2015. This averages to more than 93 deaths a week or more than 13 deaths every day.
  • Of the 4,379 worker fatalities that occurred in private industry, 937 were associated with construction.
  • The leading causes of construction-related deaths are:
    • Falls
    • Struck by object
    • Electrocutions
    • Caught-In/Between

Contact an Experienced Construction Accident Attorney

If you or a loved one sustained a serious injury in a construction accident, contact Thomas J. Henry. Accidents that occur on construction sites can cause severe, life-altering injuries, causing physical, emotional, and financial pain. Our experienced construction injury attorneys work diligently to make sure our clients are comfortable and informed throughout the entire process. At Thomas J. Henry, we have a record of achieving real results for our clients.

Let us assist you with your construction accident injury. Our firm has offices in Corpus ChristiSan Antonio, Austin, and Houston, serving clients across Texas and nationwide. Call us today for a free case review.

Three Workers Burned by Acid at Exxon Baton Rouge Complex

On Monday, three contract workers were burned by sulfuric acid while working at a chemical plant operated by ExxonMobil Corps in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Details of the Baton Rouge Industrial Accident

According to the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality spokesperson Gregory Langley, there was no off-site impact and the release of the acid was secured immediately. A spokeswoman for Exxon, Sarah Nordin, said in a statement that the three contract workers “were contacted with sulfuric acid during normal work activities” at the chemical plant.

Reuters reports that all three were initially treated at the chemical plant by Exxon emergency personnel. Two of the workers were transported to a local hospital for further evaluation. One had received first-aid treatment at a local clinic.

The Department of Environmental Quality and Exxon are investigating the release, details of which were not immediately available.

Safety Tips on Working with Sulfuric Acid

When handling pure sulfuric acid in a laboratory or industrial setting, or when using products that contain concentrated sulfuric acid, it’s important to prioritize safety precautions. The following protective equipment should be worn when using sulfuric acid:

  1. Respirator
  2. Long rubber gloves
  3. Boots
  4. Industrial apron
  5. Chemical safety goggles
  6. Face shield

It’s also a good idea to have access to an eye-flush station if using sulfuric acid at your workplace. Another important consideration when handling ths dangerous chemical is that it can react violently if it comes into contact with water.

Types of Exposure to Sulfuric Acid

Exposure to sulfuric acid can occur as skin/bodily contact, ingestion, or inhalation of vapors. Each type of exposure can pose serious hazards to your health and should be managed immediately and appropriately by a medical professional to minimize damage and health risks.

  • Skin Contact – If sulfuric acid comes into contact with your skin, immediately flush the affected area gently with lukewarm water for at least 30 uninterrupted minutes. Seek medical attention immediately.
  • Eye Contact – If sulfuric acid gets into your eyes, immediately flush the eye(s) with water for at least 30 minutes. Seek medical attention immediately.
  • Ingestion – If you ingest sulfuric acid, rinse your mouth immediately with water. Do not induce vomiting. Continually rinse your mouth with water and seek medical attention as soon as possible.
  • Inhalation – If you inhale sulfuric acid aerosols, seek fresh air and medical attention immediately.

20 Injured, Evacuation Advised After Wisconsin Refinery Explosion

At least 20 people were injured after an oil refinery explosion in Superior, Wisconsin. Authorities have asked anyone within a mile radius, or within 10 miles to the south, to evacuate the area.

About the Superior, Wisconsin Refinery Explosion

According to Time, a tank explosion occurred at the Husky oil refinery Thursday morning, resulting in a fire at the scene and about 20 injuries. At least six people were hospitalized following the incident.

Superior police said the fire was initially put, but reignited. Following the resignation, police began advising that anyone within a one-mile radius of the refinery, or within 10 miles due south of the refinery, evacuate for their own safety.

The cause of the tank explosion is still unclear and will be investigated once the scene is stable.

Construction Accident Statistics

The following information was provided by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA):

  • 5,190 workers were killed on the job in 2016. This averages to more than 99 deaths a week or more than 14 deaths every day.
  • Of the 4,693 worker fatalities that occurred in private industry, 991 were associated with construction.
  • The leading causes of construction-related deaths are:
    • Falls
    • Struck by object
    • Electrocutions
    • Caught-In/Between

Contact an Experienced Construction Accident Attorney

If you or a loved one sustained a serious injury in a construction accident, contact Thomas J. Henry. Accidents that occur on construction sites can cause severe, life-altering injuries, causing physical, emotional, and financial pain. Our experienced construction injury attorneys work diligently to make sure our clients are comfortable and informed throughout the entire process. At Thomas J. Henry, we have a record of achieving real results for our clients.

Let us assist you with your construction accident injury. Our firm has offices in Corpus ChristiSan Antonio, Austin, and Houston, serving clients across Texas and nationwide. Call us today for a free case review.

Police Investigate Fatal Elevator Accident at Grove City Construction Site

Grove City authorities are investigating a fatal accident that left a construction worker dead.

Details of the Grove City Construction Accident

According to WSYX, police believe the construction worker may have fallen 10 feet before being crushed by an elevator at the Mount Carmel facility. He was rushed to a hospital where he later died.

Workers at the site were told to go home following the incident.

The man’s identity has not been released and OSHA is expected to investigate the scene.

Construction Accident Statistics

The following information was provided by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA):

  • 4,836 workers were killed on the job in 2015. This averages to more than 93 deaths a week or more than 13 deaths every day.
  • Of the 4,379 worker fatalities that occurred in private industry, 937 were associated with construction.
  • The leading causes of construction-related deaths are:
    • Falls
    • Struck by object
    • Electrocutions
    • Caught-In/Between

Contact an Experienced Construction Accident Attorney

If you or a loved one sustained a serious injury in a construction accident, contact Thomas J. Henry. Accidents that occur on construction sites can cause severe, life-altering injuries, causing physical, emotional, and financial pain. Our experienced construction injury attorneys work diligently to make sure our clients are comfortable and informed throughout the entire process. At Thomas J. Henry, we have a record of achieving real results for our clients.

Let us assist you with your construction accident injury. Our firm has offices in Corpus ChristiSan Antonio, and Houston, serving clients across Texas and nationwide. Call us today for a free case review.

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