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August 11, 2022: Company Overrode Alarm 460 Times During Huron River Chemical Spill

The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) issued a “Second Violation Notice — Egregious” against Tribar Manufacturing following the recent hexavalent chromium spill in the Huron River.
EGLE spokeswoman, Jill Greenberg, said “Because of the gravity of the violations, WRD (EGLE’s Water Resources Division) moved directly into second notification and escalated enforcement, normally a three-step process.” State regulators allege Tribar “apparently overrode alarms 460 times on July 29, as a large tank containing the chemical was drained into the city of Wixom’s wastewater treatment system.”
The company was cited for failing to maintain a properly updated Pollution Incident Prevention Plan, failing to immediately notify EGLE of the discharge, and sending an unauthorized discharge of pollutants.
In response to the violations, Tribar released the following statement. “Tribar has invested millions of dollars in sophisticated environmental controls to prevent an accidental release of wastewater prior to treatment at our facility. Based on an initial investigation, those automated controls were all functioning properly at the time the plating solution was released to the wastewater treatment plant. However, the controls were repeatedly overridden by the operator on duty while the facility was shut down for the weekend. That individual is no longer employed by our company, and we are in the process of further improving our internal controls to prevent a future occurrence.”

State regulators: Company overrode alarms 460 times as chemical flowed toward Huron River

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