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Case Summary: $2 Million Stipulated Penalties Related to Violation of Cleanup Settlement at Resin Disposal Site in Pennsylvania
On July 8, 2013, the United States and Hercules, Inc. entered into an agreement whereby Hercules, Inc. agreed to pay a stipulated penalty of $2 million dollars for alleged violations of a 1992 consent decree associated with the Resin Disposal Site in Pennsylvania.
The United States had alleged that Hercules, Inc. violated the 1992 settlement several times throughout 2011 by failing to report to EPA uncontrolled releases from its on-site treatment system. Those alleged releases resulted in the hospitalization of an employee of the West Elizabeth Sanitary Authority treatment plant and the closure of the plant for four days.
Hercules, Inc. is a Delaware corporation which manufactures and markets chemical specialties used in making products for home, office, and industrial markets. Hercules, Inc. was acquired by Ashland, Inc. in 2008.
The Resin Disposal site, located in Allegheny County, Penn. is a 26-acre site containing a two-acre landfill. The landfill received approximately 85,000 tons of industrial waste from 1949 to 1964. At that time, the landfill was owned and operated by the Pennsylvania Industrial Chemical Company. The wastes included organic solvents, resin cakes, filter materials, and oils from a resin manufacturing process. The landfill is located in a strip mine valley and was created by constructing an earthen dike across the floor of the valley. Approximately 50 people live within a half of a mile of the site, and about 25,000 people reside within a mile of the site. The site is located about a half of a mile from the Monongahela River.
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