JULY 2011

EPA orders tire recycler to reduce risk of fire

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has ordered Consolidated Tire Recyclers, Inc., which operates a tire recycling facility in Mecca, California, to remove excess stockpiled tires and improve fire prevention or face fines of up to $7,500 per day.

Located within the Cabazon Band of Mission Indians Reservation, the tire recycling facility primarily sells crumb rubber as fuel to a power generation plant.

The EPA’s order supports the Tribe’s action when it issued Consolidated Tire Recyclers a Notice of Violation and Order to Comply, requiring the facility to better manage the tires at its facility.

The unilateral order, issued under the authority of the federal Resource Conservation & Recovery Act, follows a facility visit in which EPA, the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Tribe found an estimated 90,000 tires to be an imminent fire risk. On May 17, 2011, a fire broke out at the facility but was contained to a shredded tire piping system.

The EPA Administrative Order against Consolidated Tire Recyclers sets a schedule to reduce the risk of fire, including:

  • Cease receiving waste tires.
  • Properly store tires, including reducing the size of its current piles.
  • Remove its waste tires currently stored at a site located across the street.
  • Remove all flammable materials from tire pile areas.
  • Upgrade the fire suppression system.