EPA: Dougherty Co. hazardous waste sites hit by tornado pose no - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

EPA: Dougherty Co. hazardous waste sites hit by tornado pose no public threat

Superfund sites were hit by the January 22, 2017 tornado (Source: WALB) Superfund sites were hit by the January 22, 2017 tornado (Source: WALB)
Reports detail storm damage at the MCLB site (Source: WALB) Reports detail storm damage at the MCLB site (Source: WALB)
Contact KADB to learn more about recycling (Source: WALB) Contact KADB to learn more about recycling (Source: WALB)
ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

Hazardous waste sites are scattered all across the county. Many are the by-product of factories and landfills that pollute surrounding soil, water and air.

Some of these areas, called Superfund sites, contain potentially harmful chemicals, soil and groundwater contaminants that the United States Environmental Protection Agency is making a push to clean up or contain safely. 

More than a year ago, a tornado ripped through Dougherty County leaving areas devastated. 

Two of those federally listed hazardous waste sites were in its path.

EPA spokespeople said no contaminants caused danger to the public during the storm.  

Documents and responses from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency state sites at the Marine Corps Logistics Base and former Firestone Tire and Rubber Plant were affected by the storm, but the public was not in danger by any of the damaged caused, despite the presence of potentially harmful chemicals.

EPA spokespeople said that the two sites have been assessed since January 2017. But there is still work to be done. MCLB inspection reports from March 2017 state some trees still needed to be cleared near the MCLB site.

We've reached out to base officials for an update on their efforts clearing the hazardous waste site, we're still waiting for a response and will update the information when it comes in. 

Keeping your community safe

There are ways you can help keep the environment safe from similar hazardous materials.   

"TV sets," Keep Albany-Dougherty Beautiful Executive Director Judy Bowles said. "TV sets have four pounds of lead and, also, mercury."

Bowles said there may sometimes be minor fees to collect hazardous waste or electronics, but small businesses and even individuals can make a big difference.

"Every six weeks these boxes will be full," Bowles explained while discussing the electronics recycling site behind her 2106 Habbersham Road office. "It just makes sense that we do that to make things out of a material that we already have, rather than to start from scratch," Bowles added. 

Bowles said that not only does it keep the environment safe, but it's also practical. KADB collects computers, phones, batteries, ink cartridges and other electronics.  

"We encourage everybody to save on landfill space and recycle everything you can recycle," said Bowles.  

Bowles extends that message to both the titans of industry, that could possibly create enough waste to be listed as a Superfund site, but also the neighbors she interacts with on a daily basis. 

You can learn how to recycle your electronics by contacting KADB Monday through Friday at (229) 430-5257. 

Copyright 2018 WALB. All rights reserved.

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