Connecticut oil company faces EPA fines
Sep 25, 2006 11:55 AM
Pennywise Oil Company Inc, a Connecticut oil storage and delivery company, faces fines of up to $157,500 for allegedly failing to plan for and guard against oil spills at its facilities in Essex and Westbrook CT, according to information from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) September 6.
EPA said the company did not have Spill Prevention, Control, and Countermeasure (SPCC) plans in place at either its main facility in Westbrook or its bulk tank farm in Essex, as required by the federal Clean Water Act.
Pennywise had prior spills in November 2005 and January 2006. Both spills were caused by overfilling tanks located at 137 Dennison Road, Essex. While ground water was impacted for both discharges, neither spill discharged to navigable waters. Both spills were reported to the National Response Center which prompted an inspection by EPA, the agency said.
The Connecticut Department of Environmental Protectionís Emergency Response Unit received the spill notifications from the company, and initiated emergency remediation activities to protect the surrounding environment.
EPA said that the location of the Pennywise facilities means that spills could impact navigable waters. A spill occurring at the main facility could contaminate Cold Spring Brook, a tributary of the Long Island Sound, and a spill at the Essex tank farm could contaminate the Falls River, a tributary of the Connecticut River.
An EPA inspector identified the lack of SPCC plans at the facilities in February 2006. The inspector noted that, in addition to not having a plan, the company had failed to construct containment around the three bulk storage tanks and associated transfer areas at the Dennison Road location, EPA said.
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