[Archive Home][Date Prev][Date Next][Index]


"Hawaiian airport workers threaten OSHA complaint over constructiondust issues"


Thursday, July 6, 2017


Airport workers threaten OSHA complaint over construction dust issues

By Jim Mendoza

Hawaii News Now



HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Aaron Bohlen checks in passengers curbside at the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport. Now, he's trying to take care of his health.


He, along with many other airport employees, say they've taken to wearing masks to cover their noses and mouths – a drastic measure, in order to combat the construction dust that's taken over part of the terminal.


"Every time a car drives by, every time a bus drives by, it just kicks up clouds of this cement dust," he said. "We're breathing it in. It's in our faces all day long."


At night, a contractor is making repairs on the road that fronts the overseas terminal on the airport's departure level. The dust is from the concrete that's being scraped off the surface. 


During the day, according to airport porter Kimo Pennington, that dust blows everywhere.


"It's hard to breathe sometimes," he says.


Joan Kasuga says she spends much of her time wiping down the desk in her Kintetsu International booth. She understands the need to fix the street, but thinks the state and the contractor need to ensure something's being done to keep the dust down.


"I'm coughing right now. The dust gets into your eyes. It's really bad," she says.


"There's just layers of dust everywhere," Bohlen said. "If you look out into the lobby, its everywhere. It's on everything."


State transportation department spokesman Tim Sakahara told Hawaii News Now on Wednesday that the contractor doing the work will increase measures to control the dust by spraying water and vacuuming up debris.


"The contractor has also been sending in crews daily to clean the terminal. Airport custodial staff have also been diligently working to help address the dust within the terminal," he said.


Bohlen said some airport workers are so fed up and worried about inhaling the dust that they may complain to the state's Occupational Safety and Health office.


"The construction guys, when they do their work, they got protective gear and stuff. We don't have any of that stuff. It's like working in a construction zone without any of the gear you're supposed to have," Bohlen said.


PNG image

Current CAA news channel:

Fair Use Notice
This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of political, human rights, economic, democracy and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.html. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. If you have any queries regarding this issue, please Email us at stepheni@cwnet.com