Enforcement

TRW Vehicle Safety Systems, Inc. Hazardous Waste Settlement

In agreements with the U.S. Government and the State of Arizona that were announced on January 18, 2001, TRW 's Vehicle Safety Systems Inc. resolved charges that it violated hazardous waste laws at its airbag manufacturing plant in Queen Creek, AZ under a civil settlement and criminal plea agreement. The Criminal Plea Agreement and Consent Decree call for payment of $17.6 million in fines for failure to manage hazardous wastes in accordance with Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) regulatory requirements.

RCRA requires facilities that produce, store, transport or and dispose of hazardous waste to manage it in accordance with regulatory requirements. The company admitted that it knew a landfill in Mobil, Arizona, was not authorized to accept the hazardous waste the company sent there, and that its sodium azide-contaminated waste was potentially harmful to the public and the environment. VSSI also admitted that it knew it was illegal to store this hazardous waste onsite at its airbag facility without a permit.

For additional information, contact:

James A. Thompson
U.S. EPA
RCRA Enforcement Division (2246A)
1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20460
(202) 564-4024
James Thompson (thompson.jamesa@epa.gov)