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Hooker Furniture Corp. Settles Alleged Clean Air Act Violations at Martinsville, Va. Plant

Release Date: 10/9/2002
Contact Information: Donna Heron, (215) 814-5113

Donna Heron, (215) 814-5113

PHILADELPHIA – Hooker Furniture Corporation has settled alleged Clean Air Act violations at the company’s Martinsville, Va., manufacturing plant, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today.

In a consent agreement with EPA, Hooker Furniture has agreed to pay a $56,500 penalty for alleged violations of EPA-approved state regulations on particulate emissions. In addition, the company has pledged to complete a $468,000 project to reduce air pollution from the plant’s furniture finishing operations.

“This settlement deals fairly with past violations, and will result in cleaner air now and in the future,” said EPA Regional Administrator Donald S. Welsh. Welsh noted that the company has certified its current Clean Air Act compliance, and has committed to an air pollution control project that exceeds federal and state requirements.

According to EPA, stack testing in January 1999 revealed that one of the plant’s three wood-burning boilers was in violation of limits on particulate emissions. Particulate emissions have been linked to asthma and other respiratory ailments, and pose particular risks for children and the elderly. Particulate pollution also leads to reduced visibility.

After this stack testing, the company shut down the boiler, conducted an extensive upgrade of the particulate control system, and demonstrated complete compliance in a December 2001 stack test.

As part of the settlement, Hooker Furniture has committed to a special five-year, $468,000 project to cut emissions of hazardous air pollutants and smog-producing volatile organic compounds from the plant’s furniture finishing operations.

The company has neither admitted nor denied liability for the alleged Clean Air Act violations.