Dedham, Massachusetts – The court trial of a heating contractor from Plainville, who had been accused of removed asbestos material improperly and illegally from a Medway single-family rental home and of intimidating an occupant who resided there, will start on this Thursday in the Superior Court in Norfolk.
Nicholas Pasquantonio was indicted by a grand jury in Norfolk County in 2012 January on 2 counts of breaching the state (MA) Clean Air Act (CAA) for allegedly failing to notify the state DEP (Department of Environmental Protection) regarding asbestos removal and for failing to effectively prevent emission of asbestos fibers, in addition to a count of intimidation of witness. Pasquantonio is 42 years old.
David Einis, a Weston resident who owns the property, also is facing 2 counts of breaching the state Clean Air Act. Einis is 59 years old. Both Einis and Pasquantonio pleaded not guilty to the charges against them at their indictments in 2012 March, the office of Martha Coakley, the Attorney General of Massachusetts.
In 2010 December, Einis allegedly hired Pasquantonio, an unlicensed asbestos contractor with Johnny’s Oil Service in Plainville. Pasquantonio had to replace a boiler in the Medway home. A family including several children was living in that home.
Pasquantonio failed to seal off the basement when replacing the boiler. Additionally, he released pipe insulation that contained asbestos, a dangerous material which is known to cause terminal cancer.
Kenneth Kimmell, the commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection, said that the department closely worked with the Medway Health Board to follow up on the finding and addressing the breaches further which were found there at the worksite. He said the enforcement would send a clear message that the rules for protecting public health, which include the removal as well as disposal of asbestos, should be followed and whoever fails to follow this would be punished.
The defendants allegedly did not inform the MassDEP prior to disturbing asbestos – a highly regulated material in the entire United States – while replacing the boiler. They did not follow proper procedures either to prevent the emission of asbestos fibres.
According to the Labor Department Standards, only licensed contractors are supposed to carry out asbestos removal. It also requires them to follow the standards for safe removal, storing, and disposal of the substance. The contractor should notify government authorities prior to the commencement of any job that involves handling of asbestos.