Department of Ecology News Release - September 30, 2014

Seattle metal finisher settles hazardous waste violations
Corrections made, but will pay $24,000 for past practices

SEATTLE – A firm that applies rust-resistant coating to iron and steel has corrected past environmental violations, but will pay a $24,000 fine for having allowed the non-compliance to occur.

Washington Department of Ecology inspectors found repeated violations of dangerous waste regulations at the Ace Galvanizing Inc. facility at 429 South 96th St. south of Seattle during four site visits in 2012, 2013 and 2014. Ace Galvanizing has since cooperated with Ecology and come into compliance with the regulations.

The company cleans steel and iron parts and covers them with a rust-resistant coating. Wastes generated by the process are stored prior to disposal. Improper handling of dangerous wastes can expose workers, the public and the environment to safety and health hazards.

The violations at Ace Galvanizing included not properly labeling dangerous waste containers, not keeping the containers closed, and not dating containers to ensure disposal within a required 90-day limit.

“Ace Galvanizing has come in and out of compliance over the years. We welcome their efforts now to consistently meet Washington’s hazardous waste requirements,” said Dennis Johnson, regional section manager of Ecology’s Hazardous Waste and Toxics Reduction Program. “It is important to ensure fair and consistent compliance with these safety, health and environmental protections industry-wide.”

Ecology originally set the penalty at $36,000. Ace Galvanizing entered into an expedited settlement agreement to reduce the recommended penalty by one-third. The company also waives its right to appeal the penalty. The settlement saves the state, taxpayers and Ace Galvanizing the expense of appeal litigation.

“Ace Galvanizing remains committed to full compliance with environmental regulations,” said Loren McConnell, the company’s president. “We have taken steps under our new ownership to prevent recurrence of these problems. We are providing ongoing training to ensure that all our workers understand the issues related to compliance with environmental regulations.”

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Contact:

Larry Altose, communications, 425-649-7009, @ecySeattle

Daylin Davidson, regional hazardous waste compliance unit leader, 426-649-7090

Loren McConnell, President, Ace Galvanizing, 206-762-0330