(Boston, Mass. – April 10, 2009) – EPA recently settled its claims against Simoniz USA, Inc. for violations of the Emergency Planning and Community-Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) and violations of the Clean Air Act. Simoniz manufactures vehicle cleaning products at its facility in Bolton, Conn.
Last September, EPA filed an administrative complaint alleging that Simoniz, because of its use of concentrated hydrogen fluoride, violated its obligation under the Clean Air Act to submit a risk management plan to help prevent or respond to a spill. The complaint also alleged that Simoniz failed to submit forms to EPA describing its inventory of hydrogen fluoride and certain other toxic chemicals, as required by EPCRA. Failure to submit EPCRA forms reduces the public’s ability to obtain accurate information about the type and amount of toxic chemicals in a community.
Under the administrative settlement, Simoniz is required to pay a penalty of $62,300 and to perform three environmentally beneficial projects. One project requires Simoniz to commission and publish research by a third party on whether a less toxic alternative to hydrogen fluoride can be used in car wash products.
The agreement also requires Simoniz to purchase an operations vehicle for the Bolton Fire Department, to enhance the fire department’s ability to respond to spills of hazardous substances. The third project is to install a wastewater treatment and reuse system that will help Simonize conserve water. The three projects are estimated to cost approximately $275,000.
Simoniz has undertaken to commission research that could reduce or eliminate the use of hydrofluoric acid in car wash products. This toxic substance is dangerous for anyone to handle, and when used in car wash products it can easily wash down storm drains into rivers and streams.