Enforcement and Inspection

Sugar Refiner Stuck with Big EPA Penalty—August Enforcement Wrap-up

Food distributor releases chemical
Large food distributor
New Hampshire   
EPA Region 1
Risk management violation: According to the EPA, the facility had an inadequate risk management plan that lacked clear procedures to aid emergency responders when they arrived at the scene, leading to a delay in shutting down the system.
Penalty: $126,700 fine

No sweet penalty
Sugar company
EPA Region 3
CAA violations: According to the EPA, the sugar refinery violated its Title V operating permit requirements related to permit conditions that restricted the operation of boilers that are not equipped with postcombustion control devices to limit emissions of SO2, NOx, or particulate matter.
Penalty: $200,000 fine

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Pump contractor cites in trench fatality
Pump contractor
EPA Region 5
OSHA violations: According to OSHA, a 19-year-old had just finished locating an existing waterline in the trench using a handheld shovel when a sidewall caved in, killing him. Another worker in the 6-foot-deep trench was not injured.
Penalty: $137,000 fine

Poor fracking practices
Natural gas and oil driller
EPA Region 6
CWA violations: According to the EPA, a tank leaked an estimated 400 to 700 gallons of hydrochloric acid onto the earthen pad surface of the well site. The earthen pad was also flooded with water from recent heavy rainfall. In order to remove the rainwater from the well site, the crew supervisor drove a pickup truck through an earthen berm, causing the rainwater contaminated with hydrochloric acid to flow off the well pad and down into Dry Creek.
Penalty: $140,000 fine

Pesticide maker violates FIFRA
Pesticide distributor
EPA Region 7
FIFRA violations: According to the EPA, inspections of the distributor’s facility found that the company had received 16 imported shipments of Azoxystrobin Technical, a fungicide, whose bags were not labeled with an accepted EPA label.
Penalty: $102,000 fine

Gas producer violates CAA
Natural gas producer
EPA Region 8
CAA violations: According to the EPA, in violation of the CAA, the producer failed to control hazardous air pollutant emissions from its plant and failed to implement a program for leak detection and repair.
Penalty: $20,000 fine

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Companies violate cesspool ban
Three companies
EPA Region 9
CWA violations: According to the EPA, the companies allegedly failed to close their large-capacity cesspools on the Big Island. Large-capacity cesspools are used by restaurants, hotels, office complexes, and multiple dwellings, such as duplexes, apartments, and condominiums, to dispose their sanitary waste.
Penalty: $141,200 fine

Property manager violates lead rules
Property management company
EPA Region 10
Lead disclosure violations: According to the EPA and HUD inspectors, from 2007 to 2010, the property management firm leased 35 units and failed to produce records showing they notified tenants about the potential presence of lead paint and lead-based paint hazards, as required by the Lead Disclosure Rule.
Penalty: $10,000 fine