News Release

2 asbestos removal companies fined a combined $800,000 for knowingly exposing workers and the public to unsafe conditions

November 04, 2021
#21-035

TUMWATER — Two Washington asbestos removal contractors are facing a combined $800,000 in fines from the Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) for knowingly and repeatedly exposing employees and the public to extremely hazardous conditions.

Above and Beyond Asbestos Removal LLC of Edmonds faces fines for more than a dozen asbestos safety violations related to work at homes in Bothell and Burien, while 4 Aces Restoration LLC of Des Moines is being cited for several safety issues at homes around King County.

Asbestos is extremely hazardous and can cause potentially fatal diseases like asbestosis, mesothelioma and lung cancer. Only a certified abatement contractor that follows specific asbestos-related safety and health rules may remove and dispose of asbestos-containing building materials.

Above and Beyond Asbestos Removal LLC

L&I decertified Above and Beyond in 2018, but the contractor has continued to bid on and perform asbestos abatement projects. The recent fines are in connection with two separate June 2021 inspections. 

Inspectors observed an employee of Above and Beyond removing a popcorn ceiling in a Bothell home. When informed of the contractor’s license suspension, they left without arranging to clean up debris that L&I confirmed contained asbestos. There were no HEPA vacuums or wetting agents, no asbestos bags, no asbestos warning signs, and the home HVAC system was on and running — all violations of basic safety measures. 

At a Burien home, investigators found the son of Above and Beyond’s owner removing flooring that contained asbestos. The son, who like his father, is not certified for asbestos abatement, said he was unaware the company was decertified and unfamiliar with air monitoring and containment requirements. 

In total, Above and Beyond was fined $575,000 and cited for 13 willful serious violations for intentional disregard of asbestos regulations and continuing to pursue and complete abatement work without certification or a contractor’s license. The company has been cited numerous times in the past, and has been identified by L&I as a severe violator.

4 Aces Restoration LLC

At job sites in Normandy Park, Bellevue, and Seattle, 4 Aces Restoration had no machine to filter asbestos dust from the air and did not have the required decontamination shower. They also didn’t have a compressor on site, which is needed to operate the respirators workers rely on to prevent inhalation of extremely hazardous asbestos dust.   

4 Aces Restoration has been inspected by L&I more than a dozen times since 2016. The company owner has more than 20 years’ experience with the rules and regulations around this type of hazardous work and was cited for the same respirator violation in 2018. A company representative also lied to investigators about the company’s qualifications.

As a result of the three recent inspections, L&I imposed 10 willful serious citations and $227,439 in fines. The company has appealed. 

Homeowners are encouraged to do their homework by reviewing L&I’s certified contractors list before hiring an asbestos removal company.

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For media information:

Dina Lorraine, L&I Public Affairs, 360-972-4868

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