Safety violations found at another Freedom chemical facility

The company's negligence wasn't limited to one location

Topics: west virginia chemical spill, Freedom Industries, water safety, Chemicals, ,

The company responsible for contaminating West Virginia’s tap water had been improperly storing chemicals at more than one location. A second facility owned by Freedom Industries, inspectors found, is also unprepared for potential leaks.

The second facility was cited for five separate violations, the Associated Press reports:

Department of Environmental Protection spokesman Tom Aluise says inspectors found five violations Monday at a Nitro site where Freedom Industries moved its coal-cleaning chemicals after Thursday’s spill. Inspectors found that, like the Charleston facility where the leak originated, the Nitro site lacked appropriate secondary containment. In Charleston, a porous containment wall allowed the chemical to ooze into the Elk River.

…Other violations include failing to follow stormwater and groundwater guidelines, not filing monitoring reports and not properly storing drums with potential contaminants.

Unlike the Charleston facility, the Nitro site isn’t near a river or water supply. But the picture beginning to emerge of Freedom’s negligent practices doesn’t bode well for the company.  It also underscores the need for increased regulations, on a local and federal level, over chemical storage facilities.

On Wednesday, Attorney General Patrick Morrisey vowed that the state would launch an exhaustive investigation “designed to ensure that another such spill never happened again.”

Lindsay Abrams

Lindsay Abrams is a staff writer at Salon, reporting on all things sustainable. Follow her on Twitter @readingirl, email labrams@salon.com.

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