S.C. Business Owner Indicted for Asbestos Violations

A grand jury has indicted a South Carolina business owner on seven counts of violating the Clean Air Act after his painting company allegedly failed to conduct a proper asbestos inspection before the start of renovation work on a Myrtle Beach condo complex.

Exposure to asbestos fibers can lead to a number of serious and fatal health conditions including mesothelioma, a rare and deadly cancer.

The grand jury’s indictment named David Braswell is the co-owner of commercial painter Cool Cote, Inc., according to Carolina Live. Cool Cote began work at the Regency Towers complex in March 2009 but the indictment alleges it failed to conduct an asbestos inspection as required by law or to notify the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control before the work began.

The indictment claims that Braswell and other Cool Cote staff were aware of the presence of asbestos before the work took place. Braswell was also indicted on two counts of making a False Statement to a Federal Agent.

According to Carolina Live, the indictment alleges that: “On or about April 20, 2009, it was discovered that Cool Cote, Inc. personnel had pressure-washed the building’s surface coating without proper containment; releasing asbestos-containing material into the air and onto parking areas, landscaped areas, and the beach sand dunes.”

Cool Cote, Inc. personnel were not given protective clothing, and residents of the condo complex were not warned about the possibility of airborne asbestos, according to the indictment.

Unfortunately, asbestos violations like this one are not unusual. Just last month an Illinois businessman was fined $3,000 and sentenced to five months in prison and three months of house arrest for improperly removing asbestos from a former industrial site in violation of the Clean Air Act, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

If you or a loved one were exposed to asbestos and later diagnosed with mesothelioma, you may want to review your legal options with an asbestos attorney. Contact Sokolove Law today for a free case evaluation and to learn more about filing an asbestos lawsuit.