March 26, 2007

Crompton fined $90K for acid release from Toronto plant

TORONTO, ONT-Crompton was fined $90.000 after pleading guilty to a violation of section 14(1) of the Environmental Protection Act in connection with the discharge of a contaminant that caused an adverse effect to the surrounding community. The company, which has changed its name to Chemtura, manufactures and markets polymer products and specialty chemicals. Its Toronto plant produces naphtha sulfonic acid. On November 10, 2004 a spill at the plant resulting in the release of about 600 gallons of naphtha sulfonic acid. The spill created a mist was created that left the site and passed over neighbouring properties. Three people nearby reported vomiting, swollen glands and breathing problems. In addition, a business in the vicinity had to be evacuated and roads in the area were temporarily closed. An investigation by the Ministry of Environment's investigation and enforcement branch led to a charge against Crompton of discharging a contaminant into the natural environment that caused an adverse effect. The company was given 90 days to pay the fine. A victim fine surcharge was levied as well. Since being charged, the company has upgraded training for the loading of dangerous chemicals, including acid.

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