A history of violations
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A history of environmental violations

A history of violations

A view inside the Reverb Furnace Feedstock Room during a site visit by the Department of Toxic Substances Control of the Exide Technologies facility in Vernon.

 (Department of Toxic Substances Control)
A history of violations

The 15-acre facility operated around the clock seven days a week in the industrial city of Vernon, processing about 25,000 batteries a day.

 (Department of Toxic Substances Control)
A history of violations

State regulators conducted a site visit to the plant last April. It’s not clear whether this image of the reverb furnace feedstock room is documenting a violation. 

 (Department of Toxic Substances Control)
A history of violations

Exide’s Vernon recycling plant was allowed to operate for decades without a full permit despite a history of environmental infractions. 

 (Department of Toxic Substances Control)
A history of violations

Inspectors over the years documented more than 100 violations, including lead and acid leaks, an overflowing pond of toxic sludge, enormous cracks in the floor and hazardous levels of lead in the soil outside.

 (Department of Toxic Substances Control)
A history of violations

Local, state and federal officials cited the plant over and over for emitting too much cancer-causing arsenic and lead, a potent neurotoxin, and for violating hazardous waste laws.

 (Department of Toxic Substances Control)
A history of violations

While Exide was operating, air quality officials determined its arsenic emissions posed an increased cancer risk to more than 100,000 residents. Even more concerning was lead, which can cause learning disabilities, lower IQs and other developmental problems, even at low levels. 

 (Department of Toxic Substances Control)
A history of violations

Strict new air quality regulations forced the plant to go idle in 2014. But the company continued to rack up violations for emitting too much lead. State inspectors found additional problems, including holes in the facility’s roof and walls, the next year.

 (Department of Toxic Substances Control)
A history of violations

In March 2015, the company signed an agreement with the U.S. attorney’s office to close permanently. The deal allowed Exide and its employees to avoid prosecution for years of environmental crimes, including illegal storage, disposal and shipment of hazardous waste.

 (Department of Toxic Substances Control)
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