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U.S. EPA cites Guam Waterworks for underground fuel tank violations

Release Date: 4/5/2005
Contact Information: Dean Higuchi, (808) 541-2711

Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands facilities also inspected

HONOLULU -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, working with Guam Environmental Protection Agency staff, inspected and fined eight Guam Waterworks Authority facilities a total of $3,000 for underground storage tank violations.

The EPA and staff from the CNMI's Division of Environmental Quality also inspected tanks in CNMI , fining one facility $300 for not completely emptying its underground fuel tank, which was supposed to be temporarily closed.

The EPA cited the Guam Waterworks Authority for violations that included failing to have overfill protection installed on an operating tank and failing to permanently close or upgrade temporarily closed tank systems after a year.

"The federal field citation program helps bring underground storage tanks into compliance quickly and reminds a facility that they need to comply with the rules," said Norwood Scott, underground tank inspector for the EPA's Pacific Southwest Region. "Given the limited amount of fresh water on Guam and CNMI, proper operation and maintenance of these tanks are critical to the protection of underground water sources."

A December 1998 federal deadline required regulated underground storage tanks to have spill and overfill equipment, corrosion protection, and release detection methods to prevent releases.

The EPA frequently conducts unannounced tank inspections. Owners and operators who are cited are required to correct the violations, submit documentation, and pay the settlement amount within 30 days. Failure to comply may subject them to penalties of up to $11,000 per violation per tank per day in addition to the added cleanup costs for leaking tanks.

More information on the EPA's underground storage tank program can be obtained at:

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