Air quality inspectors cited Freedom Industries for violating a state regulation that says, "No person shall cause, suffer, allow, or permit the discharge of air pollutants which cause or contribute to an objectionable odor at any location occupied by the public."
The company was ordered to provide a "detailed explanation" of what happened, how long the violation existed and what remedial measures it plans to take.
DEP water quality officials cited the company, saying the spill had created "conditions not allowable in the Elk River by creating odors in the vicinity of state waters, by requiring an unreasonable degree of treatment of state waters, and by creating a sheen on the surface of the water."
Agency inspectors also said the company "has failed to take all measures necessary to contain the spill and render it harmless."
DEP water officials ordered the company to cease further receipt of material to be stored in the area with the faulty secondary containment.
Agency officials ordered the company to "take all necessary measures to contain, recover and remediate the material that has escaped the breached above ground storage tank and the secondary containment structure." The DEP said the remediation must include, at a minimum, "installation of interceptor trenches adjacent to the Elk River, and the installation and maintenance of booms and absorbents in affected waterways."
The DEP ordered the company to immediately conduct an integrity test of all above-ground storage tanks and secondary containment structures for its entire facility. The company also must provide a report that documents the integrity of its storage tanks, the DEP said.
In a statement issued Friday afternoon by publicists from Charles Ryan Associates, Freedom Industries said that, "Since the discovery of the leak, safety for residents in Kanawha and surrounding counties has been Freedom Industries' first priority.
"We have been working with local and federal regulatory, safety and environmental entities, including the DEP, Coast Guard, Army Corp of Engineers and Homeland Security, and are following all necessary steps to fix the issue. Our team has been working around the clock since the discovery to contain the leak to prevent further contamination," the company said via Charles Ryan. "At this point, Freedom Industries is still working to determine the amount of 4-methylcyclohexanemethanol, or Crude MCHM, a chemical used in processing coal, that has been released, as the first priority was safety, containment and cleanup."
Reach Ken Ward Jr. at kw...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1702.