Imagine spending years of your life hoping that the abandoned building in your neighborhood would disappear, only to find out that when it is demolished, it was done with such negligence that it exposed you and your family to the risk of malignant mesothelioma. That is exactly what has happened in the West Baltimore neighborhood where St. Vincent’s Infant Asylum once stood. The building, originally built between 1860 and 1910, was purchased by a company called 1411 Division Street LLC in 2016, and in 2018 they illegally knocked it down without proper inspections or asbestos remediation. The state of Maryland has sued them for violation of asbestos laws.
In detailing the case against 1411 Division Street LLC, Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh made clear that the fines he is requesting for the company having exposed the neighborhood to the risk of malignant mesothelioma may total millions, as the fines would being on the first day after they failed to clean up the contaminated site on September 1stof last year, and the daily fee is up to $25,000. The suit was filed on behalf of the state’s Department of the Environment, which determined that the site is still contaminated by asbestos months after a “stop work” order was issued by the city of Baltimore.
According to Frosh, “We are asking the court for significant penalties. The reckless conduct that we allege in the complaint is not only a violation of Maryland law, but also a threat to the health and safety of those subjected to the asbestos exposure.” The suit also charges that the company’s contractors “failed to provide workers with protective clothing and equipment, including respirators, during demolition and failed to take precautions to minimize dust or prevent asbestos dust from becoming airborne.”
Exposure to asbestos such as that in the Baltimore neighborhood can have deadly repercussions. If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with mesothelioma or another asbestos-related disease, contact us at 1-800-966-2244 for information on the resources and rights available to you.