A Utah company has been ordered to pay over $100,000 for water pollution violations at two of its large truck stops in Iowa . Bob Brammer of the Iowa Attorney General’s office says one of the violations happened at the "Flying J" travel plaza in the Des Moines suburb of Clive after diesel fuel got into a local creek in March of 2007.
He says firefighters found an "oily sheen" on the creek and found it ran for several miles. Brammer says they also found the Iowa Department of Natural Resources had for several years been engaged in environmental enforcement actions against the Davenport "Flying J" location. Brammer says the Davenport issues had been ongoing without any resolution.
Brammer says there’d been four to six years of back and forth with alleged violations that the company promised to take care of. He says the company at times promised to do something, but then didn’t do it, or paid a fine. Brammer says the issue was then turned over to the Attorney General’s office. Brammer says the Attorney General filed a lawsuit, and at the same time filed a proposed resolution for the case, which the company has agreed to.
Brammer says a Polk County judge has approved the resolution which requires the company to pay 140-thousand dollars in a civil penalty, as well as take steps to prevent more environmental problems in the future. He says the company will make some construction changes to meet the environmental concerns. Brammer says the company’s travel plaza pose some problems because of their size.
"They are physically gigantic," Brammer says, as the Clive facility has four and half acres of parking. He says with all the trucks and cars parked on the site, there is inevitably runoff that has to be managed to the fuel doesn’t get into state waters.
"Flying J" is reported to be the largest retailer of diesel fuel in North America, with approximately 220 locations in the U-S and Canada. The company has two other Iowa locations in Williams and Evansdale.