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Abilene Products Co., Inc., Agrees to $90,660 Settlement for Violations of Clean Air Act at Abilene, Kan., Fertilizer Facility

Release Date: 08/14/2013
Contact Information: Ben Washburn, 913-551-7364, washburn.ben@epa.gov

Environmental News

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

(Lenexa, Kan., Aug. 14, 2013) - Abilene Products Co., Inc., has agreed to pay a $15,290 civil penalty to settle alleged violations of the Clean Air Act (CAA) at its fertilizer facility in Abilene, Kan. As part of its settlement agreement with EPA Region 7, the company will spend an additional $75,370 to complete a supplemental environmental project.

The settlement stems from an inspection that revealed Abilene Products failed to develop and implement a Risk Management Program for its fertilizer facility that complied with the requirements of the chemical accident prevention regulations.

Following community complaints, EPA inspected the facility in November 2011. At that time, the facility was storing more than nine times the threshold quantity of anhydrous ammonia. Anhydrous ammonia is a toxic chemical and short-term exposure to high concentrations can cause death. The potential for emergency personnel and the community to be exposed to an accidental release was increased due to the facility’s failures to comply with numerous risk management program requirements. Abilene Products chose to remove a total of 99,000 pounds of anhydrous ammonia from the facility.

Abilene Products will complete a supplemental environmental project valued at $75,370 as a part of the settlement. The company will install a weather station system and an automated safety system at the facility to increase the safety of chemicals stored on site.

By agreeing to the settlement, Abilene Products has certified that it is in compliance with the CAA and all of its requirements.

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EPA Region 7 has published an Accident Prevention and Response Manual for Anhydrous Ammonia Refrigeration System Operators (PDF) (80 pp, 1.57MB, About PDF)

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