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Three D.C. Cement Companies Settle Fines for Storm Water Violations

Release Date: 11/15/2000
Contact Information: David Sternberg, (215) 814-5548

David Sternberg, (215) 814-5548

WASHINGTON - Three southwest D.C. cement companies that were cited for not properly controlling storm water discharges have agreed to settlements. In separate settlements, Maryland Rock Industries, Inc. will pay a $6,781 penalty, and Opportunity Concrete Corp. and John Driggs Co. will each pay $4,000 penalties, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today. All three discharge storm water from industrial activity into the D.C. sewer system which discharges into the Anacostia River.

“Storm water runoff is a major cause of pollution in the Anacostia. EPA and the District of Columbia are committed to restore the environmental health of this important waterway," said EPA Regional Administrator Bradley M. Campbell.

Uncontrolled storm water runoff from industrial and construction sites often contains oil, grease, chemicals, oxygen-depleting nutrients, and other pollutants. These cases were investigated by the Anacostia Environmental Enforcement Task Force, which includes members of the water enforcement program of EPA’s mid-Atlantic office, and the District of Columbia’s Environmental Crimes Unit.

Under the Clean Water Act, owners of certain industrial and construction facilities must obtain a permit before discharging storm water runoff into waterways. These permits must include a storm water pollution prevention plan, including safeguards such as oil spill prevention, storage or cover of bulk materials, housekeeping practices, and employee training about environmental requirements.

According to EPA’s complaint, Opportunity Concrete failed to obtain a required permit for discharges from its ready-mixed concrete manufacturing operation at 1601 S. Capitol St., S.W. The company discharges storm water and runoff from into the District’s municipal storm sewer system. These unpermitted discharges were observed during EPA inspections.

The DC Rock concrete recycling business at 1721 South Capitol Street, S.W., owned by the John Driggs Co. of Capitol Heights, Md., also did not have a required permit for the discharge of storm water and process water onto South Capitol street, where it enters the municipal storm sewer system. On several occasions, EPA investigators observed unpermitted discharges, threatening water quality in the Anacostia River.

Maryland Rock Industries, Inc.(a subsidiary of Florida Rock Industries, Inc.) stores and processes sand and gravel at its Anacostia Terminal, located at 2 “S” Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. EPA charged that the company failed to implement the storm water pollution prevention plan required by its Clean Water Act permit. An EPA inspection revealed that the company had not adopted measures to prevent storm water runoff contaminated with sand and fine rock dust from entering the municipal storm sewer system.

As part of the settlement, these parties neither admitted nor denied liability for these violations. However, the parties have certified that they are now in compliance with applicable Clean Water Act requirements.

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