EPA says Lubbock hazardous waste site one of region's worst
Friday, the EPA began shredding the empty drums to make room for the more than 40,000 they still have to go through.
LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) -
A former local business property is being called one of the worst hazardous wastes sites the Environmental Protection Agency has seen.
"This site at Scrub-A-Dubb is definitely in the top 5 worst situations we have right now in this region," EPA On site coordinator, Greg Fife said.
The federal agency came to Lubbock two weeks ago to begin clean-up efforts at the former Scrub-A-Dubb Barrel Company on the city's north side. On Friday, the EPA began shredding the empty drums to make room for the more than 40,000 they still have to go through.
The EPA says the toxic waste at the former business is a great concern to public health and to the environment.
"Out of the 60,000 [barrels] we have on site, we think there are between 2,000 and 4,000 that have significant hazardous waste in them," Fife said.
Fife expects they will have to dispose of 2 acres worth of contaminated soil. "There's a lot out there, including acid, that could easily burn the skin," Fife explained.
Scrub-A-Dubb would buy the barrels from other companies to clean and re-sell. Fife says they were only supposed to purchase empty containers. However many of them are full or not completely empty. "If we can trace back who or which companies the full barrels came from, they could be held responsible for this," Fife continued.
Two dozen barrels have already tested positive for toxic material. "Some of this dirt is horribly contaminated. It's worse than anything I've seen on most of the sites I've been on. There's no way to really tell what's underneath until we get rid of them," Fife said.
The EPA says some the drums are also on land that does not belong to the Scrubb-A-Dubb company.
Watch KCBD NewsChannel 11 tonight at 5, 6, and 10 for the very latest on this developing story.