Waipahu incinerator
meeting tomorrow

Officials will present information
about the level of health risks

A meeting tomorrow will detail the state's decision that the Waipahu Incinerator and Ash Landfill does not pose a health risk to workers at the site, children using the nearby Waipio Soccer Park or area residents.

The state Department of Health meeting is 6-8 p.m. at the Waipahu High School cafeteria.

"We want to keep the community informed," said Larry Lau, deputy director for environmental health. "This is their community. It's where they live and they deserve to know what's going on. An educated and informed public is the best way to help prevent future illegal dumping."

More than 214 tons of junked household appliances, 6,000 empty propane tanks and construction waste were illegally dumped at the former incinerator site under the direction of a then-city employee.

While investigating the illegal dumping this spring, the state ordered the city to remove soil contaminated with hazardous levels of heavy metals.

The state also fined the city $542,459 for violating solid and hazardous waste rules. The city is appealing the fine.

Evidence indicates the site is not a health risk as it is currently used, according to Steve Chang, chief of the solid and hazardous waste branch of the Health Department. However, a hazard could exist if the sites are used differently.

There will not be a formal presentation at the meeting. Instead, state officials will display information at kiosks about:

>> The historic uses of land underlying the incinerator site and landfill.

>> Timelines of the cleanup.

>> How the health risk of exposure to heavy metals from the site was calculated.

Also, city officials will be present to answer questions about proper disposal of various types of garbage, said Suzanne Jones, city recycling coordinator.

The state encourages people to arrive before 7:30 p.m. to have time to see all information.


E-mail to City Desk


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