State and local authorities in San Francisco on Wednesday accused two asbestos-removal companies operating in the Bay Area and Los Angeles of defrauding consumers and engaging in unsafe and illegal practices.
Atty. Gen. John K. Van de Kamp and Dist. Atty. Arlo Smith filed suit in San Francisco Superior Court against Epi-Center Inc. and Precision Works Inc., which operate in Palo Alto and Santa Monica, alleging that the companies engaged in false and misleading advertising and incomplete asbestos analysis, removal and cleanup at residences and businesses that hired them to eliminate the dangerous substance.
The civil complaint seeks to stop the companies from doing business until they comply with proper procedures, pay for independent inspections of properties where they worked and pay civil penalties of $2,500 for each violation.
Investigators inspected 15 buildings in the San Francisco area where Epi-Center and Precision Works were hired to remove asbestos. “Sloppy work was indicated. Asbestos remained after the work had been done,” Smith said.
No one was available for comment at either Epi-Center or Precision Works.