Dayton company cleans up after EPA warning

A sunglasses-manufacturing company in Dayton ordered by the federal Environmental Protection Agency to correct violations of the Clean Water Act, appears to have complied.

In a press release Wednesday, the EPA announced that Oakley Inc., which owns a titanium eyeglass frames-manufacturing plant at 95 Lakes Blvd. in Dayton, was ordered to limit its wastewater discharge and establish a self-monitoring plan to correct violations of the Clean Water Act.

According to the Greg Arthur, environmental engineer at the EPA's San Francisco office, Lyon County authorities in June requested assistance from EPA in locating the source of solvent fumes coming from county sewers and cloudy white wastewater found in its sewage treatment plants.

County officials, accompanied by EPA experts and Nevada Department of Environmental Protection workers inspected the Oakley plant, where they discovered manufacturing processes that discharged methyl benzene and ceramic slurry into the sewers, violating local, state and federal wastewater regulations, according to Arthur.

He added that Lyon County officials have since reported no more fumes or slurry at the treatment plant since the inspection.

Arthur said the discharge posed no health risk to residents, but could have to sewer workers.

"The risk was to the sewer workers, people who work for Lyon County," he said.

"The way that the sewer lines run right through the industrial park to the treatment plants, there are no residences around there."

He said workers were at risk for acute irritation and difficulty breathing.

"The whole thing started because the Lyon County people got the feeling they were getting gassed by the thing," he said. "It was fuming out of the sewers, not that it was eating sewers up." Arthur added there was no risk of damage to any county equipment.

He also said there would be no requirement for the company to attempt a cleanup of the area.

"It's through. It's gone through the system," he said.

Oakley was also ordered to monitor its discharge and report the results.

Failure to follow the order could have cost Oakley up to $32,500 per day per violation, according to the EPA.

Neither Lyon County officials nor Oakley Inc. representatives could be reached for comment.

n Contact reporter Karen Woodmansee at or 882-2111, ext. 351.


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