Florida flyover project remains a year behind schedule because of asbestos findings

The construction of an overpass as part of a major flyover project in Fort Myers, Florida, remains a year behind schedule as a result of an asbestos cleanup at the site.

For two years, employees of an asbestos contractor have worked alongside construction workers to sift through dirt displaced by the project. In that time, they have found 22 cubic feet of asbestos.

WZVN-HD, the ABC affiliate in Fort Myers, reported that the Posen construction firm has promised the Lee County Department of Transportation that the overpass will be finished by April 31.

Meanwhile, the asbestos contractor AMRC is trying to sift through the remaining 10,000 cubic yards of dirt within the next six weeks. "We’re going to push hard to get it done," company spokesman Jack Snider told the news station.

The state Department of Environmental Protection also told WZVN that the construction firm is close to exceeding the legal limit for asbestos, which is 35 cubic feet. Fines could be levied if the company exceeds the limit.

Asbestos exposure is linked to diseases that include lung cancer, mesothelioma and asbestosis, and is the focus of many asbestos settlements and mesothelioma lawsuits that have been filed in recent years.