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News Releases from Region 09

Solid Waste Removal at Fruitland Magnesium Fire Site Begins in Maywood, Calif.

Air monitor installation and site prep completed

Contact Information: 
Nahal Mogharabi (mogharabi.nahal@epa.gov)
En español: Soledad Calvino (calvino.maria@epa.gov)

LOS ANGELES—This week, the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency will work with the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) to identify and remove solid waste at the Fruitland Magnesium Fire Incident site in Maywood, Calif.  

Materials on-site, which include solid and hazardous wastes, will be separated, categorized, and loaded onto trucks for transportation to approved disposal facilities. EPA has identified metals such as arsenic, cadmium, chromium, lead, and mercury as the contaminants of concern at the site. The removal trucks will not be travelling through the E. 52nd St. neighborhood.  EPA will also control dust generation and migration using water to wet materials.

In preparation for the removal activities EPA has completed the following:

  • Debris Curtain: a debris curtain was installed along the southern boundary between the facility and adjacent residential property to protect against dust, noise and debris;
  • Storm Water Pollution Prevention: straw wattle erosion controls were installed around the perimeter of the site to prevent rain from spreading ash or soil off the site;
  • Dust Suppression: a soil sealant, similar to a glue, has been applied to debris and soils at the site to control dust generation. 
  • Air Monitoring: five temporary air monitor stations have been set up around the perimeter of the site, both upwind and downwind, including two at residential properties directly adjacent to the site. These air monitoring stations will collect samples and measure total dust in the air, and will be reviewed in real time by EPA contractors. Additionally, air monitoring for Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) will be done at the site.  To-date, no VOCs have been detected in the air.

After waste removal is completed, EPA will evaluate the site conditions to ensure that no hazardous wastes remain.  EPA does not anticipate needing below surface excavation as most of the ground surface at the site was covered with concrete or asphalt prior to the fire.

On June 14, 2016, a fire destroyed an industrial property located at 3570 Fruitland Avenue in Maywood, Calif. The fire affected two facilities on the Fruitland Avenue property – Panda International Trading (PIT), a scrap metal recycling business, and SOKOR Metals, an electronics recycling business. The EPA will continue to coordinate with state and local agencies, including the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, the Los Angeles County Fire Health Hazardous Materials Division and the California Department of Resources, Recycling and Recovery.

For more information, please visit:   https://www.epa.gov/ca/epa-response-fruitland-magnesium-fire-maywood-ca