ArcelorMittal in Weirton to Pay $93K Fine for Waste
Lead, cyanide and chromium are among the forms of hazardous waste U.S. Environmental Protection Agency officials said they found at an ArcelorMittal Weirton site along the Ohio River during a 2016 inspection, as the government on Tuesday announced a $93,288 settlement with the company.
Luxembourg-based ArcelorMittal employs more than 800 workers in a tin plate operation at the plant, which opened in 1909 and was for most of the next 100 years known as Weirton Steel Corp. Though much of the historical facility either lies dormant or has been sold for new development, the tin operation remains viable.
The EPA cited ArcelorMittal Weirton for these specific violations as a result of an inspection that took place May 24-25, 2016:
∫ failure to ship a variety of hazardous wastes off-site in a timely manner;
∫ failure to minimize the risk of release of hazardous waste;
∫ failure to make a hazardous waste determination; and
∫ failure to properly label and date spent batteries.
Regulators do not believe any hazardous material entered the air or water. Officials said the toxins were found during an inspection of an electroplating facility, with the contaminants located on equipment, the facility floor, and outside the building.
“By failing to properly manage hazardous waste, there is the potential for employees to be exposed to hazardous constituents or result in the release of hazardous constituents into the environment via soil or groundwater,” EPA officials stated.
Federal officials said the settlement reflects the company’s compliance efforts and its cooperation with EPA’s investigation.
“ArcelorMittal Weirton is committed to environmental compliance and the health and safety of its employees,” company spokesman Bill Steers said. “The improvements made at the facility further reduce risk and advance our goal toward environmental excellence. The resolution reflects the company’s compliance efforts and its cooperation with U.S. EPA.”