A county has been fined thousands of dollars after being found guilty of violating asbestos regulations by the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality. The fine was imposed on Klamath County after county officials were found to have allowed an unlicensed contractor to clean up asbestos from a county road,

The DEQ fined the county over eight thousand dollars for the violation, following an incident that occurred at the start of May. The contractor involved, Pilot Rock Excavation, was also fined over four thousand dollars for the breach of asbestos regulations.

At the start of May officials from the DEQ visited the site where the contractor was performing a storm drain project. The county was controlling and supervising the project, as it owned the project site. However, it was found that the contractor had unearthed over eight hundred linear feet worth of pipe containing asbestos.

Much of the pipe had already been broken up, and was taken by DEQ officials for testing. It showed that the broken up pipe contained around fifty two percent asbestos.

Asbestos is a known carcinogenic, and can cause a range of health problems through exposure, including scarring of the lungs, respiratory problems, and asbestos related cancer.

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