Pump Service Pleads Guilty to Clean Water Act Violations

July 25, 2019

Company discharged at unauthorized locations to avoid dumping fees

A pump company in Virginia Beach, Va., faces five years of probation and hefty fines after pleading guilty to Clean Water Act (CWA) violations.

Forest Sewer Pump Service will be sentenced for the violations Oct. 24. Fines up to $50,000 per day of violations will be assessed at that time.

According to WTKR, the Forest Sewer Pump Service violated the act in 2015 and 2017 by discharging pollutants into manholes and pump stations. The company was a licensed wastewater hauler and provider of pumping services and grease hauling for more than 20 years. 

The pump services maintained an industrial user wastewater discharge permit to discharge into the Hampton Roads Sanitation District (HRSD) sewage treatment system. According to WTKR, the company discharged at unauthorized locations to avoid paying dumping fees to HRSD. 

"We really don't want the grease building up in the pipes," said Garrett Crain, HRSD's pretreatment and pollution prevention inspector, according to The Virginia-Pilot. "It's just going to keep building up and building up and building up. Eventually we have to do something to get it out of there."

Discharging trucked pollutants in the unauthorized locations is specifically prohibited by CWA pretreatment prohibitions and also HRSD’s local Industrial Wastewater Discharge Regulations. According to WTKR, the pump service was caught on video dumping pollutants at the location in the Virginia Beach area.

Photo 26492457 © Lftan | Dreamstime.com
Image courtesy Institute of Chemical Research of Catalonia (ICIQ).