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EPA orders owners of former metal plating facility in So. Cal to cleanup hazardous waste

Release Date: 01/24/2007
Contact Information: Margot Perez-Sullivan, Desk/415.947.4149/cell 415.760.9161

LOS ANGELES The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has ordered Ambitech, Inc. and James and America Janda to clean up hazardous substances at a former print and circuit board manufacturing and metal plating facility outside Los Angeles.

Ambitech, located at 8944 Fullbright Avenue in Chatsworth, Calif., used copper, lead, nickel, silver, hydrochloric acid, cyanide, sulfuric acid and other hazardous substances in its plating operations. Ambitech used these chemicals to produce, among other things, mainframe computers, oil drilling instrumentation, aerospace and defense equipment.

“Companies that use hazardous chemicals are required to properly store and dispose of those materials,” said Dan Meer, chief of the emergency response and preparedness branch for the EPA’s Pacific Southwest region. “If Ambitech cannot undertake a clean up at their facility, EPA is prepared to do it.”

Following enforcement action taken by the California Department of Toxic Substances Control, the EPA in coordination with state officials inspected the facility and found large quantities of hazardous substances left onsite when plating operations ceased in the fall of 2005. If unaddressed, the hazardous substances, some of which are stored in unmarked and leaking drums, would continue to pose a risk to the surrounding area, including residential neighborhoods that lie within half of a mile of the facility.

Ambitech and the Jandas have until January 25 to agree to cleanup the chemicals. Failing to meet that deadline, the EPA’s emergency removal group will conduct the cleanup using Superfund funds. The agency may spend up to $334,000 in cleanup costs which will be charged back to the responsible parties.

Under the federal Superfund law, the parties that operated or owned the facility are liable for cleanup costs.