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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 7, 2005

Contact: Erin Phalon
(609) 984-1795

DEP FINES SCRAPYARD FOR EXPOSING
STORMWATER TO POLLUTANTS

(05/10) TRENTON -- Emphasizing the importance of protecting New Jersey's water resources, Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Commissioner Bradley M. Campbell today announced that Coach Auto Parts in Monroe Township, Gloucester County was fined $65,000 for improperly storing automotive parts that can pollute soil, groundwater and surface water.

"After numerous attempts to compel the scrapyard to comply with DEP orders, the Department was left with no recourse other than the imposition of this $65,000 penalty," said Commissioner Campbell. "DEP will vigilantly protect New Jersey's water resources and prosecute those who expose our water to hazardous substances found in auto parts."

During a May 23, 2003 inspection, DEP staff found that Coach Auto Parts improperly stored automotive materials including engine blocks, transmissions, batteries and gasoline tanks outdoors without taking required steps to prevent these items from leaking into the ground. Coach Auto Parts also failed to submit to DEP annual self-inspection compliance certification.

DEP required Coach Auto Parts to properly store its automotive materials within sixty days and issued a compliance evaluation to encourage the facility to comply with the terms of its Stormwater Discharge permit. However, subsequent inspections in September 2003 and January and February 2004 revealed that the facility continued to improperly store automotive fluids and drained automotive fluid directly from vehicles onto the ground. This places stormwater at risk by allowing pollutants found in automotive fluid to contaminate the soil and water beneath the vehicles.

In response to the facility's continued noncompliance, DEP fined Coach Auto Parts $65,000. Coach Auto Parts has been evicted from the property and is no longer operating.

 

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