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EPA sues Parish Chemical for hazardous waste violations

Release Date: 09/9/2009
Contact Information: Tom Sitz, 303-312-6918, Sheldon Muller, 303-312-6916,

Conditions at Vineyard, Utah, facility threaten workers, residents and the environment

(Denver, Colo. -- September 9, 2009) A complaint has been filed in federal district court in Salt Lake City on behalf of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency against the Parish Chemical Co. of Vineyard, Utah, alleging noncompliance with federal law regulating the management and storage of hazardous wastes.

The complaint seeks compliance with federal law and civil penalties for violations of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) and its implementing regulations, including the State of Utah’s federally authorized hazardous waste program. EPA also intends to recover more than $646,000 in costs incurred in responding to the release or threatened release of hazardous substances at the Parish Chemical facility, located at 145 N. Geneva Road.

EPA's complaint is based on several site inspections and a removal action at the facility revealing significant noncompliance with federal laws regulating the management and storage of hazardous wastes. Alleged violations at Parish Chemical include storage of hazardous waste without a permit, failure to have liability insurance, failure to have financial assurance for facility closure, failure to perform air emissions tank assessments, inadequate evaluation of storage tank integrity, and inadequate labeling of hazardous waste containers and tanks, among others.

"The neglect discovered at Parish Chemical represents a continuing threat to the safety of employees, nearby residents and the environment," said Eddie Sierra, EPA's Assistant Regional Administrator for Enforcement in Denver. "Our goal is to compel this company to comply with all applicable environmental and health and safety requirements."

Parish Chemical is a manufacturing company that specializes in the research, development and production of organic chemicals and materials. The facility encompasses 2.5 acres and includes a two-story building with offices, laboratories, a process area and various storage areas. In addition, the facility includes chemical and drum storage areas adjacent to and outside of the main building, as well as at least two surface impoundments. The following substances, among many others, have been found at the facility: methylene chloride, acetone, dimethyl formamide, petroleum ether, tetrahydrofuran, dichloroethyl ether, benzene, toluene, perchloric acid and phosphorus pentachloride.