AUGUST 2008

Pennsylvania DEP discovers violations on waste trucks

Forty-four operational and safety violations were discovered on 36 trucks during recent inspections by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) at four landfills and one municipal waste transfer station in Pennsylvania’s northwest region.

The inspections were conducted on June 24 at Lake View Landfill in Erie County, Northwest Landfill in Butler County, Seneca Landfill in Butler County, Veolia Greentree Landfill in Elk County, and Tri-County Waste Transfer Station in Mercer County.

“Our inspections underscore the priority we give to ensuring that trash trucks on Pennsylvania highways are safe and in compliance with environmental regulations,” said DEP Regional Director Kelly Burch. “We have conducted thousands of trash truck inspections over the past several years because we want to get unsafe trash trucks off the highways.”

The DEP regional staff inspected a total of 519 trucks and found the following:

•Lake View Landfill – 170 trucks inspected, 3 trucks with violations;

•Northwest Landfill – 40 trucks inspected, 6 trucks with violations;

•Seneca Landfill – 115 trucks inspected, 14 trucks with violations;

•Veolia Greentree Landfill – 161 trucks inspected, 11 trucks with violations; and

•Tri-County Waste Transfer Station – 33 trucks inspected, 2 trucks with violations.

Some trucks had more than one violation. All of the violations were against haulers, not the landfills or transfer station.

Trash haulers must obtain authorization from DEP through Act 90, the state’s Waste Transportation Safety Act, to haul waste in Pennsylvania to in-state facilities. DEP inspectors look at compliance history, and if outstanding violations exist or there is an inability to comply with Act 90 regulations, the state can revoke authorization.

In addition to checking the Act 90 authorization, DEP inspectors look for fire extinguisher and sign violations; drivers not properly managing waste during transportation; leaking loads; improper covers over the waste; trucks that are overweight or otherwise overloaded; and log book or record-keeping violations.