Anytime you begin a construction project, you know there are certain risks you may not be able to predict. Injuries on the job, bad weather and material prices are just a few factors that may impede your project goals. Setbacks can cost you money and endanger the completion of your work.
One element every construction site encounters is the environmental risk the project presents to the surroundings. There may be commonly known areas of potential harm against which you can insure your company, but it is difficult to know the varying laws, regulations and hazards of each jurisdiction and every type of construction.
Pollution is a dirty word
Environmental laws are constantly expanding, and the potential to harm the environment is real with every new construction plan. It is often a delicate juggling act to complete a building while causing minimal damage to the existing biomes and habitats. Environmental risks may occur from many sources on a construction site, for example:
- Heating and air conditioning units
- Drywall dust
- Improperly stored building materials
- Lead dust or paint (mostly when renovating or demolishing older buildings)
- Concrete washout
- Leaking equipment fuel
You are not only responsible for keeping the air, water and earth clean throughout your construction, you are also overseeing the well-being of your employees and those who are exposed to your structure. For example, even materials that claim to be environmentally friendly may pose a risk by promoting mold growth.
Weighing your risks
If you have begun or are considering beginning a construction project, you may feel overwhelmed by the permits, documentation and insurance coverage California law requires you to maintain throughout the project. This may be especially true in the ever-changing area of environmental protection and pollution control. To minimize your risk, you will certainly want to cover every base so that, should a problem arise, your business is protected.
Consulting with a risk management attorney will provide the opportunity to review the particulars of your project and help you determine the best way to protect your business from environmental liability or other risks that may jeopardize your goals. Experienced legal counsel will help minimize your frustration and allow you to focus on the future of your business.