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Eastern Oregon farm and trucking company face $34,000 fine for diesel spill

Release Date: 03/09/2011
Contact Information: Kate Spaulding, EPA Enforcement Compliance Officer, (206) 553-5429, spaulding.kate@epa.gov Tony Brown, EPA Public Affairs, (206) 553-1203, brown.anthony@epa.gov

(Seattle – March 9, 2011) Under an agreement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Hartley Farms & Feedlot LLC and Valley Trucking LLC Inc. have agreed to pay a $34,000 penalty for spilling diesel fuel at the Hartley Farms property near Nyssa, Oregon in violation of the federal Clean Water Act.

On February 23, 2010, Hartley Farms and Valley Trucking spilled approximately 2,500 gallons of diesel from a 10,000-gallon bulk storage tank and fuel tanker truck. The spill occurred when the tanker truck attempted to pump diesel fuel into the nearly-full bulk storage tank. The discharge of diesel from the facility caused a sheen on the surface of the Old Owyhee Ditch, which flows into the Owyhee River. Valley Trucking responded quickly to the spill and cleanup was completed in March 2010.

According to Edward Kowalski, EPA’s Director of Compliance and Enforcement in Seattle, this spill could have been prevented if Hartley Farms had Spill Prevention, Control and Countermeasures provisions in place. Beginning on Nov. 10, 2011, all above-ground oil storage facilities regulated under the Clean Water Act’s SPCC rules, including farms, will be required to have a spill prevention plan and secondary containment.

“Companies and farms that store diesel must be diligent in their efforts to contain and prevent spills,” said EPA’s Kowalski.

The Clean Water Act’s SPCC rule requires that regulated facilities have a written plan detailing the measures in place for preventing and responding to petroleum spills.

For more information about EPA’s SPCC Rule, visit: http://www.epa.gov/emergencies/content/spcc/index.htm

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