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Brattleboro Company Takes Steps to Better Protect Public Health under EPA Settlement

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David Deegan (

BOSTON - A Brattleboro, Vt., company that manufactures coatings will design and install a system that captures and controls solvent vapors at its plant, ensuring that workers are protected from solvent emissions and that the environment is protected from a possible release of solvent emissions.

In an agreement with the US Environmental Protection Agency, C.E. Bradley Laboratories will spend $272,711 on an environmental project that consists of designing and installing a solvent emission capture and control system in the manufacturing area of its Brattleboro facility. C.E. Bradley, which makes coatings for the wood, metal, graphic arts and plastic industries, also agreed to maintain its facility in compliance with federal and state hazardous waste laws, including properly managing its containers of hazardous waste and ending the practice of hanging solvent-contaminated rags to dry.

"This settlement will help protect workers and neighboring communities from potential exposure to hazardous wastes," said Curt Spalding, regional administrator of EPA's New England office. "Due to EPA's action, the company not only has taken steps to correct the alleged violations but also has undertaken a project to create a safer workplace."

The company will also pay a penalty of $71,000 to settle claims by EPA that it violated federal and state hazardous waste laws. According to a 2015 complaint against the company by EPA, C.E. Bradley faced nine claims of violations of state and federal hazardous waste regulations under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA).

The case stems from an Aug. 2014 inspection of the facility in which inspectors found numerous drums of hazardous waste that were alleged to have been stored for well over 90 days, rags contaminated with solvents hung to dry, hazardous wastes stored in open containers, and a cracked and deteriorated concrete containment area in the main hazardous waste storage area.

Storing hazardous wastes in open containers and the open air drying of solvent-contaminated rags resulted in emissions of volatile organic compounds to the air. The illegal storage of hazardous waste for an extended period of time, and cracked and deteriorated containment could have resulted in hazardous wastes being released to the environment.

More information on the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) (