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Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA) has removed a stockpile of approximately one million tyres from a Stawell site that would have posed a major hazard for nearby communities if it had caught fire.
EPA CEO Nial Finegan said EPA had removed about 9500 tonnes of tyres and shred after repeated failure by the site’s owners to comply with orders to reduce the risk of fire at the site.
“On 2 August 2017, it was decided that little to no effort had been made by the stockpile’s owner to comply with a Country Fire Authority (CFA) Fire Prevention Notice or any of three EPA notices issued on the site that required the owner to reduce the risk of fire at the site and to segregate tyres into smaller piles; therefore, unacceptable environmental and community risks remained on the eve of the forthcoming fire season,” Mr Finegan said.
“In short, EPA was of the view that the stockpile appeared to have been abandoned or was being handled in a manner by the owners that was likely to cause an environmental hazard.”
Over 380 trucks filled with tyre and shred were taken from the site, with the majority going to Melbourne to be processed at an EPA-licensed site, which has been inspected twice-weekly during the process to ensure appropriate management; about 35 per cent were unable to be processed due to contamination from mud and dirt and went to landfill.
Mr Finegan said if the stockpile had caught fire it would have had many environmental, economic and social risks for Stawell and its surrounds. “The environmental impacts would have included air quality, firewater runoff into local waterways and land contamination. By removing this stockpile, EPA has removed these risks to both the local community and our environment,” Mr Finegan said.
Page last updated on 20 Nov 2017