Local News

N.C. Suspends Storage At Apex EQ Facility

Posted October 26, 2006

— N.C. Division of Waste Management (DWM) officials Wednesday suspended until further notice hazardous waste storage at EQ Industrial Services in Apex, the site of a fire earlier this month. Plus, EQ officials must stop cleanup efforts until further notice.


The hazardous waste disposal facility caught fire three weeks ago. sending clouds of toxic smoke into the atmosphere. Thousands of Apex residents had to leave their homes.

U.S. District Court Judge Terrence Boyle issued the order Wednesday after four Apex residents in a class action-lawsuit asked him to stop work to protect evidence and allow defense experts to enter the EQ property.

In a separate filing, EQ will not be permitted to bring or accept any additional hazardous or non-hazardous wastes of any type onto the site for storage, treatment or any other purpose for the duration of the order.

In a statement released to the media Wednesday afternoon, EQ said it would comply with both orders.

Because the facility and its hazardous waste management units were damaged in the fire, DWM determined that EQ is not able to manage hazardous waste in compliance with its permits and rules. There are also concerns about the facility's containment structures and the state cannot be assured that any new waste that enters the facility will be stored and secured appropriately.

Provisions of the Order of Immediate Suspension of Provisions of Hazardous Waste Management Permit include:

  • EQ is not allowed to bring any waste of any type to the EQ facility for storage, treatment or any other purpose.
  • EQ is ordered not to accept any additional hazardous waste for storage or treatment at the facility for the duration of the order.
  • EQ shall not accept any additional non-hazardous solid waste or household hazardous waste for collection, storage, treatment, disposal or management at the EQ facility prior to obtaining a permit that would allow those activities.
  • EQ shall remove all non-hazardous solid waste or household hazardous waste from the facility in accordance with the DWM-approved cleanup.
  • No construction, repairs or alterations of any kind shall take place at the EQ facility unless DWM has determined that the permit should be modified to provide for additional or different permit conditions to ensure that rebuilding and resuming operations at the EQ facility will not pose a threat to human health or the environment.
  • Decisions about the status of the permit and any future operations will be made following a complete assessment of contamination existing on-site, a complete assessment of facility containment structures, and a complete investigation into the cause of the incident.
  • DWM is also requiring EQ to provide on-site security 24 hours a day, seven days a week, until further notice.

    More information about the state's response and actions concerning the EQ site, cleanup and monitoring can be found




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