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102 Norfolk Tenants Exposed to Insane Amounts of Lead Dust

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After notorious slumlord Samy Mahfar purchased 102 Norfolk Street in March, the building's rent-stabilized tenants didn't have to wait long before the harassment began. While three of them accepted buyouts, 18 tenants remained in the 25-unit building and were forced "to live in a 'war zone' of constant construction, landlord bullying, and hazardous worksite practice," according to a report from Bowery Boogie. The article went on, "Tenants must contend with weekly water shut downs, exposed wiring, an influx of rodents, and ill-timed exterminator visits." That was back in June, and Mahfar has continued to try and force out the building's inhabitants ever since. This week, some local politicians decided to get involved, and not a moment too soon, as a report today from DNAinfo highlights just how hazardous conditions have been inside the building. According to a report from an inspection conducted in April, which the tenants were only able to see after submitting a Freedom of Information request with the Health Department, the lead levels in 102 Norfolk were at one point 2,750 times the safe limit. "That was only one day and then this was all cleaned up," Mahfar told DNAinfo. Another inspection conducted in June revealed lead levels to be "only" two to 18 times the limit.

In addition to subjecting his tenants to an insane amount of toxic lead dust, Mahfar has also racked up a slew of other building violations (all still open), tried to block a Health Department inspector's access, and denied receiving the report after it had been sent to him. Let's hope that the politicians who are aware of the problems have something in mind more serious than a strongly worded letter, because that's not going to cut it with Mahfar, who has employed similar tactics at 143 Ludlow Street and other properties.
· Apartment Building Had Nearly 3,000 Times Legal Lead Limit, Report Says [DNAinfo]
· 102 Norfolk Street coverage [Curbed]