Public comments for: Amendment of Asbestos Control Program Rules

Comments

Comment:
1-00 Purpose: does this mean that if the DEP decides one has violated the “purpose” they can be issued violation(s)? and other then be able to issue a second violation in additional to any other infraction is the point? Page#4 (3) DEP may block an asbestos investigator from filing an ACP-5 or deny permit where "any" party has dockets, unpaid civil penalties.... Does the DEP propose having a list of those owners and/or buildings publicly available? Otherwise (for example) an Asbestos investigator will conduct an inspection for an owner, send samples to a lab i.e. incur costs but then not be able to issue the client an ACP-5 and will not be paid for his/her inspection and sampling costs.. This proposed rule can only work if such a list is publicly available in advance. Section 1-16 (k) this proposed rule is extremely broad and subjective; it’s one thing to propose immediate suspension if an asbestos investigator should be found guilty of X number of infractions/violations but its overly broad as proposed.
Agency: DEP
Comment:
Section 1-25(b) reads as follows: "Work constituting a minor project. If the work is a minor project, no notification or fee payable to the department shall be required, unless notification and fees are otherwise required by these regulation" As per the proposed rules, this section is to be deleted. Does this effectively mean that minor projects will require an Asbestos Project Notification (ACP7) to be filed? Please clarify. Thank You.
Agency: DEP
Comment:
Good morning. I have a a few comments and concerns on the Investigative side of your rules as proposed and as existing. So, I am going to take a shot. here goes. Your laws, Title 15 Chapter 1, consistently reference 40 CFR 763.86 but on observation this particular EPA law and family of laws do not address NON FRIABLES (Roofing) (Floor tiles) Transite etc. Secondly the definition of "Homogenous" in Title 15 Chapter 1 seems to only refer to Air sampling and abatement protocols. This text "Homogeneous area means an area of surfacing material, thermal system insulation material, or miscellaneous material that is uniform in color and texture." coming from 40 CFR 763.83 is acutely missing from your previous law and not even mentioned in your new proposal. Comment: How can the DEP enforce unwritten and vague unspecified laws such as your enforcement Inspectors own interpretation of Homegenous, because it is not written in the existing law? So far all written directions in your current law are references to other laws, ie 40 CFR 763.86, 40 CFR 763.80, 40 CFR 763.85 which in addition to not addressing NON FRIABLES, is wholly written for SCHOOLS. YES SCHOOLS. AHERA the act of 1987, December was written for K-12 Schools only. Your lawmakers should be referencing ASHARA!!! Thirdly If you are following AHERA, how are you requiring exterior sampling on roofs stucco and so on. It is not a requirement of AHERA. How do you propose to enforce what you have not written? I agree sampling must occur, but the DEP has to WRITE IT. This is not in your proposed law. Going back to Homogenous as defined by AHERA, most roofs are black in color and course in texture. Where does AHERA and or the DEP mention Flashing? And how do I know where the flashing starts and the roofing ends? seeing that the roof is black throughout..all the way up the parapet wall? Roofers definition of flashing is "Definition of flashing. : sheet metal used in waterproofing (as at roof valleys or hips or the angle between a chimney and a roof)" I would prefer, that if the DEP wants to enforce a law, that they first put it in writing. Hopefully my questions and comments can be heard and I hope all other investigators take heart that working together we can all be better. Oh and lastly, the idea that a sketch of a sampling location should be uploaded to the DEP in one hour is preposterous as in many cases on the field there is no access to electronics until one gets to the office. This suffices for Air and project monitoring on site locations so a sketch in the log book is fine. Thank you
Agency: DEP
Comment:
In full agreement with Serge on both the first & second points, specifically in regard to addition of general liability insurance requirements to include NYS labor law compliance for employee related injury coverage. The companies that are coverage compliant are getting crushed by competitors with second-rate insurances that neither protect their employees nor the public interest as a whole. Companies that are bearing the expense of coverage compliant insurance are competing for the same projects and are getting priced out time and again. Regarding § 30. Paragraph 4 of subdivision a, and subdivision b, of section 1-36 of title 15 of the Rules of the City of New York are amended to read as follows: "The sketch must be made within one hour of the beginning of sample collection." How do you intend to enforce this or regulate this portion of the proposed rules?
Agency: DEP
Comment:
Good afternoon As a 25 years working in the asbestos industry here are my comments: -I agree with Sergi on both topics on number 2 also workers must be inform about the variance and the locations for the variance or if is for the whole job. -In reference to Angelo comment he's right floor tiles are not been removed as intact operations i must cases After reading the proposed rules changes I'll like to make the following recommendations Ss 4-2 penalties. $ 10,000 fine is a joke for any large asbestos job, that is an encouragement for companies to break the law knowing that they will pay pennies of a dollar. Ss 10-( iv) Supervisors applicants one year of experience is not enough it must be 3 to 5 years as a minimum in order to know the industry and it should not be less that 22 years of age. ( today this industry has to many young supervisor with few to almost none experience that are not doing their jobs properly, what about the schools and hospital or any occupied building?) ) Ss 12 (b) (5) Asbestos investigators. After seen the recent embarrassing news of the 17 asbestos inspectors been arrested. My recommendation to apply should be 5 years of experience in the field "plus your proposal." Ss 13 ( K) The proposed changes and add : and his / her name be place on public DEP of convicted inspectors site. Ss 26 & 27 (I agreed with the proposed changes) I am also recommending a database for asbestos investigators to be created, this way the public, workers or anyone who is interested in such building, (school, hospital, government building etc, can see the progress of the job) Ss 30 (b) Thank you for noticing this VERY IMPORTANT point, today many air technicians place their pumps and leave the jobs for the rest of the day. The question is how they collect their samples and worse how did they get the results for the next day? Ss 35 (c) 2 on PPE who will be responsible to inspect these requirements, most workers uses the same work boots to go home with. As a personal recommendations there should be a night and weekend crews of inspectors to check all ongoing jobs, these inspections must be available to the public. Another thing honestly 311 it's not working for the workers that want to report illegal operations on jobs, there has to be a direct line I personally have called several times and had no answers or I was giving the run around we need to understand that we are dealing with HAZARDOUS materials here and should be consider a priority. Thank you for the opportunity
Agency: DEP
Comment:
1. Add General Liability insurance requirements which should include NYS labor law compliance for employee related injury coverage. Similar to DOB existing insurance requirements. Some contractors do not carry proper insurances, which are expensive. Insurance costs are skyrocketing every year and reputable asbestos companies can not compete with the companies carrying unrelated ( such as painting for example) and subsequently cheap coverage ( painting General Liability without employee related injury coverage could be 10-20 folds less expensive). This puts tremendous stress on finances of coverage compliant companies, asserts unfair competition and leaves clients unprotected in case of emergency. 2.Page 5, section 6(a) : Work involving a variance may not commence prior to the receipt of the Department’s approval of the application. Department's approval date may predate variance start date. In most cases we receive conformation that variance is approved, however actual start date on V2 form could be still pending. Proposed change: Work involving a variance may not commence prior to the receipt of the Department’s approval of the application and date on V2 form. 3. Page 20, section 43(b): Soft loosely bound ACM must be saturated. [Non-hygroscopic materials] Material that resists wetting, such as tremolite or amosite,[shall]must be thoroughly wetted on all surfaces while work is being conducted. One of the aims of proposed amendment to the rules is to include " understandable" and "plain- language revisions". Also laboratory results identifying types of asbestos in most times are not readily available at the job site. Proposed change: Soft loosely bound ACM must be saturated. [Non-hygroscopic materials] Hard bound materials such as transite, roofing, block insulation, drywall, and Material that resists wetting, such as tremolite or amosite, [shall]must be thoroughly wetted on all surfaces while work is being conducted.
Agency: DEP
Comment:
Based on previous studies done by the Environmental Protection Agency (attached) and the University of Texas Health Center at Tyler (you can access from my blogpost), both found significant levels of exposure to asbestos fibers (above the PEL) below 5 micron from floor tile removal projects. Since floor tiles require a special analysis for bulk samples involving confirmation by TEM analysis, it is not surprising that the Phase Contrast Microscope method of analysis is not picking up these small fibers, too. We recommend clearance for all floor tile projects be cleared utilizing the AHERA TEM method of analysis. Currently NYC requires TEM clearance for all projects over 10,000 feet (square or linear). We recommend expanding that requirement to include all small and large floor tile projects. For further information please see our blogpost on this subject at https://futureenv.blogspot.com/2017/07/asbestos-floor-tile-debate-results.html . We thank you for the opportunity to post this comment.
Agency: DEP