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Tucson chrome plating shop corrects hazardous waste violations

Release Date: 4/1/2005
Contact Information: Wendy L. Chavez, (415) 947-4248

SAN FRANCISCO -- As a result of a recent EPA order, a Tucson chrome-plating shop has corrected numerous hazardous waste violations at its facility.

Ideal Custom Plating, located at 937 South 6th Ave., failed to label hazardous waste in a waste storage area; stored seven 55-gallon drums of plating sludge for over 180 days; stored over 6,000 kgs. of hazardous waste; did not adequately contain chromium-contaminated wastewater; failed to properly contain or manage spent flourescent tubes; and stored almost 47 containers in the facility's waste storage area without chromium-contaminated waste labelling, and failed to properly close hazardous waste containers.

The company also failed to conduct weekly inspections, failed to adequately train employees in proper hazardous waste management, and failed to post required emergency procedures.

EPA investigators discovered the violations in March 2003, and ordered the company to sample soil for possible chromium contamination. The results of the sampling indicated no contamination had occurred.

"Laws governing hazardous waste management are put in place for a reason to protect public health and the environment," said Jeff Scott, the EPA's Waste Management Division director for the Pacific Southwest region. "Hazardous waste generators are responsible for ensuring they are in compliance with those laws."

The company corrected all violations. Based on a review of the company's finances, the EPA did not assess a penalty.

Potential release of chromium-contaminated wastewater may present a substantial hazard to human health and the environment. Health effects from chromium exposure can include asthma attacks and other respiratory illnesses, stomach upsets and ulcers, convulsions, kidney and liver damage, skin rashes and lung cancer.