Department of Ecology fines businesses in Mesa, Sunnyside

Tri-City HeraldMay 22, 2014 

Businesses in Mesa and Sunnyside were fined by the Washington state Department of Ecology during the first quarter of 2014.

Great Basin Seed Co. of Mesa is accused of burning prohibited materials, including pallets, metals and other trash. The state issued a fine of $4,500.

Johnson Foods on Blaine Avenue in Sunnyside was fined $14,000 for allegedly discharging water that was excessively acidic to be treated at the Port of Sunnyside. Acidic waste can increase odors and upset processing reactors and lagoons.

The Department of Ecology has worked since 2011 to help the company come into compliance. But when Johnson Foods, which processes fruits and vegetables, had not met interim pH limits in March 2013, the state issued the fine for violations from March to November and for failure to report violations within 24 hours, according to the state.

Also during the first quarter, as previously reported, the state fined the federal Department of Energy $261,000 for issues at Hanford, but also agreed to forgive all but $15,000 if improvements in waste management are made on schedule.

The fine was driven by two incidents. A drum leaked radioactive and hazardous chemical waste onto the floor of the Waste Receiving and Processing Facility, and radioactive and hazardous chemical contamination was found dripping from a 19-foot-long box of waste stored outside at the Central Waste Complex, according to the state.

Tri-City Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service