Your Stories: trapped behind asbestos investigation
Updated: Wednesday, July 10 2013, 04:51 PM EDT
Rochester, N.Y. --- In June we told you about how a federal investigation into the illegal removal of asbestos led to a man’s valuable possessions being trapped inside a vacant warehouse.
Tom Waydelis, who recently retired, was looking forward to using his boat and motorcycle throughout this warm summer. But last fall he decided to store both of those possessions at 920 Exchange Street. In December federal authorities sealed off the building, arrested the owner’s son, and charged him with illegal removal of asbestos.
With the hazardous material known to be inside Waydelis was stuck on the wrong side of a locked fence and a building sealed off by the EPA. When 13WHAM News told Waydelis’ story in June we also learned that the building had become exposed and was easily accessible to anyone who wished to get inside.
Waydelis expressed concern for his possessions and for the public’s safety. A month after authorities became aware of this situation through a 13WHAM News Your Stories report the asbestos abatement is finally underway at that building.
"I mean every time I go out by the lake and it's like I can't get out there (and) my motorcycle, the beautiful days to go riding, I'm retired and that's all my toys I want to be able to use them and I can't,” Waydelis said. "Yes, your report did help get it moving, again it just brought to the public what was happening over here and I think that's really pushed things to start happening."
U.S. Attorney William Hochul’s Office is prosecuting the asbestos case and was quick to respond to 13WHAM News’ inquiries about the building’s condition in June. He issued this statement Thursday:
"We are pleased that this structure is now being safely remediated," said U.S. Attorney Hochul. "Our obligation is to prosecute any potential violators of the law. As for this property, we want to make sure that any concerns that could pose a risk to the public are addressed properly and safely."