Koch Theater in New York Fined for Asbestos Hazards

Theater fined for asbestos hazardsThe David H. Koch Theater in New York City's Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts was recently found to have asbestos-related hazards by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

Worker complaints had prompted an investigation of conditions at the theater, Occupational Health and Safety magazine reports. The OSHA inspection found that workers and contractors at the facility had not been informed of asbestos-containing materials located in the theater's electrical closets and promenade area, and that such conditions constituted serious threats to employee health and safety. The asbestos-containing materials on the premises had not been labelled as such, according to the investigation, and no warning signs had been mounted for workers.

The inspection also found other violations, including conditions that could lead to workplace injury and inadequate fire safety conditions. OSHA has reportedly proposed $51,000 in fines for the theater.

Asbestos was used for many years in the construction and shipbuilding industries because of its resistance to fire and utility as an insulator. Asbestos-related diseases kill 107,000 people a year worldwide, according to the World Health Organization.