EPA working to dispose of toxic chemicals found in Slinger factory

SLINGER -- Barrels of toxic chemicals found in an abandoned factory in Slinger haven't yet been removed. The EPA was on the scene Wednesday, September 19th, where the barrels must be sorted and labeled so they can be removed and disposed of safely.

The toxic chemicals were found inside the abandoned former site of Niphos Coatings, a metal plating company.

EPA on-scene coordinator Jaime Brown says the containers hold chemicals like copper cyanide, nitric acid and sodium cyanide, among other hazardous materials.

"Between barrels and small containers, we're somewhere around 300 or so. They vary in size from 55-gallon to small five-gallon pails," Brown said.

So far, the containers have been sorted and labeled, and samples were sent out. However, the chemicals remain, despite earlier plans to ship out some of the flammable materials.

"Our next steps are to find disposable facilities to send the materials. We have to send out bids to various disposible facilities and when we get the bids back, we choose one," Brown said.

In the meantime, Brown stresses officials are doing what they can to keep neighbors safe -- even installing an air monitoring system to alert officials with a silent alarm if anything dangerous is found in the air.

"We're doing our best to ensure their safety," Brown said.

Brown says $50,000 have been set aside for the disposal project. With it, he'll work to get the most toxic and flammable chemicals out first, and seek additional funding to remove whatever is left.

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