RCRA Violations – Low Hanging Fruit??
One of the common RCRA criminal violations is the poor management practices surrounding the handling of hazardous waste containers. And one of the easiest to overlook is the storing of hazardous waste containers for over-ninety (90) days because the accumulation start date is absent or non-existent. This is a proverbial low hanging fruit that often times supplement other criminal charges.
The over-ninety day storage typically starts with accumulation start date issues. These can come about simply because the facility does not identify the accumulation start date on the label on the hazardous waste container with the month, day, and year or the facility changes the date after adding additional hazardous waste to that container (start date is when the first waste enters the container). These two “oversights” alone probably lead to the most common problems that result in the over-ninety (90) day storage of hazardous waste.
One way to avoid this RCRA mistake is through the adequate training of employees; however, more fundamentally, it comes from good facility practices and guidance from management. Given that the penalties for the illegal storage of hazardous waste over ninety (90) days can lead to criminal fines of upwards of $37,500.00, and jail time as well, a little prevention can go a long way.
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