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EPA issues complaint to Concorde Garment Manufacturing, Inc., for hazardous waste management violations

Release Date: 11/06/2007
Contact Information: Dean Higuchi, 808-541-2711, higuchi.dean@epa.gov

(11/06/07) HONOLULU – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently filed a complaint requiring Concorde Garment Manufacturing, Inc. to pay up to $27,500 per day per violation for improper storage and handling of paint thinner and solvents at its Lower Base facility in Saipan.

The company failed to comply with hazardous waste management regulations requiring facilities to properly manage and dispose of hazardous wastes.

“All facilities that handle used solvents must properly contain, manage, and dispose of their wastes. Failure to do so jeopardizes the safety of the community, workers, and the environment,” said Nancy Lindsay, acting Waste Division director for the EPA’s Pacific Southwest region. “In this case, the company decided to ignore the rules.”

In March 2004, EPA inspectors discovered 15 to 20 large plastic trash bags filled with open and leaking containers of solvents outside the facility. The company violated the EPA’s spill prevention rules by storing used solvents and solvent-soaked rags in open and leaking containers.

The company did not mark containers of spent solvents and stored hazardous wastes without a permit. In addition, it failed to train employees to properly handle and manage the facility’s hazardous waste.

The inspectors also found that Concorde failed to make required hazardous waste determinations, and violated other regulations governing hazardous waste management.

Concorde Garment, a subsidiary of Tan Holdings Company, produced clothing at its Lower Base factory from 1983 until 2006.

The EPA’s hazardous waste rules require facilities to properly store, label and seal hazardous waste containers. Facilities must also have an EPA hazardous waste generator ID number and properly trained staff, as improperly stored hazardous waste can potentially spill and pose a risk to workers and the environment. The hazardous waste must be properly disposed of and transported with an EPA hazardous waste shipping manifest.

For more information on hazardous waste visit: http://www.epa.gov/epaoswer/osw/hazwaste.htm and http://www.deq.gov.mp/.
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