OSHA hits employer with $1.2 million fine for asbestos exposure

Cicero, IL – AMD Industries Inc. faces a proposed penalty of more than $1.2 million after allegedly exposing five unprotected and untrained workers to asbestos hazards, OSHA announced May 25.

Following a referral from the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, OSHA inspected the company in December 2010 and issued a total of 19 willful and eight serious health citations (.pdf file), according to an agency press release.

Investigators found that AMD had commissioned a safety audit of its Cicero facility in 2002 that revealed asbestos-containing materials on boilers, heating units and piping. The company then used untrained in-house workers to remove the asbestos in November 2010.

OSHA said workers allegedly were exposed to materials with 20-50 percent asbestos.

Upon finding out about the work, Illinois EPA sought enforcement action from the state Attorney General's Office. AMD agreed to implement a program to remediate the asbestos contamination.

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