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U.S. Surgical Settles Case with EPA Over Hazardous Waste Violations

Release Date: 09/21/2001
Contact Information: Mark Merchant, EPA Press Office (617) 918-1013

BOSTON – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today that is has settled a case with a North Haven, Conn. surgical supply manufacturer involving alleged violations of the federal Resource Recovery and Conservation Act, or RCRA.

EPA inspected U.S. Surgical Corp. on Sept. 14 and 15, 1999. During the visit, EPA determined the company failed to:

    • Develop and implement a required program to protect against airborne emissions from a tank storing used solvents;
    • Develop and implement a required program to protect against airborne emissions from equipment leaks;
    • Perform all required daily tank inspections of tanks containg hazardous substances;
    • Document whether certain facility personnel were properly trained in hazardous waste management
    • Properly manage hazardous waste containers in 90-day storage areas.
Under the terms of the settlement, U.S. Surgical has agreed to pay a penalty of $27,569. In addition the company will maintain full compliance with the sections of RCRA law that govern the violations and all other state and federal hazardous waste laws and regulations.

"Although these violations did not involve a release of hazardous materials or wastes, EPA believes that these types of violations lay the groundwork for such a release to occur," said Robert W. Varney, regional administrator of EPA's New England office. "The reason RCRA laws are in place and need to be adhered to and enforced is to ensure that hazardous wastes do not get into the environment and pose a threat to people and the environment."

For more information about the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, visit the Web sites: