DEQ fines Bend man $61,000 over hazardous waste

Says now-defunct research lab abandoned chemicals

POSTED: 6:43 PM PDT May 8, 2013 
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BEND, Ore. -

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality said Wednesday it has issued a $61,222 penalty to Thomas Alan Reynolds for multiple hazardous waste violations related to his Bend business, Reytech Corporation.

The DEQ said Reynolds illegally transported and stored hazardous waste in corroded and leaking containers. The waste included a number of potentially explosive chemicals, flammable liquids and many toxic substances.

Much of the waste dates back to between 2002 and 2007, when Reynolds operated a research laboratory at 742 S.E. Glenwood Dr., the agency said.

DEQ officials said Reynolds abandoned about 1,100 pounds of chemicals at that site, and he illegally transported another 2,400 pounds of chemicals to a Bend storage facility.

The hazardous waste included crystallized tetrahydrofuran, a highly flammable solvent, sodium azide, which is explosive, and lithium aluminum hydride, which is violently reactive when introduced to moisture.

Other waste includes:

Reynolds was Reytech Corporation’s principal owner and chief executive prior to dissolution of the company in 2006.

The DEQ said it issued the penalty because improperly storing hazardous waste is a threat to the environment and public health. The penalty also aims to ensure that no business receives a financial incentive for bypassing environmental regulations.

Reynolds has until May 22 to appeal the penalty.