This July 2018 photo shows absorbents placed to contain oil in the stormwater pond outside Achilles USA. (Washington State Department of Ecology, file)

This July 2018 photo shows absorbents placed to contain oil in the stormwater pond outside Achilles USA. (Washington State Department of Ecology, file)

Everett manufacturer settles oil spill fines for $222,000

Six geese, a snake and blue herons were covered in oil at a retention pond outside Achilles USA.

EVERETT — An Everett manufacturer is paying $222,200 to settle fines for two oil spills that polluted a stormwater pond and tainted local wildlife near Narbeck Creek.

In July 2018, an Achilles USA employee dropped a moving tote with lubricating oil at the company’s south Everett facility, causing the container to rupture and spill into the building’s stormwater system. From there, the oil was flushed into a retention pond outside, where animals are known to hang out.

While cleaning up that spill, responders found that an overflowing collection pit inside the facility was also draining into the retention pond.

In all, 340 gallons of oil were dumped into the pond. It took three weeks to clean.

Responders caught and cleaned six geese and a snake that were covered in oil. They also saw blue herons that were covered in oil, but couldn’t catch them.

The state Department of Ecology initially cited Achilles USA, a plastic film manufacturer, last year for a $327,200 liability, negligence and failing to notify authorities of the incident.

The settlement, approved by the Washington Pollution Control Hearings Board, resolves the penalty. The money will go toward environmental restoration managed by public agencies and nonprofits.

Achilles also has paid nearly $12,000 to cover the state’s expenses in responding to the spill, and nearly $4,000 for a separate natural resources damage assessment.

In a statement, the company called environmental responsibility a priority, noting that it has invested more than $200,000 in spill prevention equipment and employee training. The company stated that it also upgraded its environmental policies and spill prevention plans.

“We are confident that these improvements will help prevent any contaminants from reaching our containment pond in the future,” the company stated.

Dale Jensen, an Ecology program manager, echoed the company’s sentiment.

“We are glad the company has taken its responsibilities seriously and hope there will be no further incidents,” he said in a statement.

Talk to us

More in Local News

Cars drive through the intersection of Highway 9 and South Lake Stevens Road on Thursday, Feb. 17, 2022 in Lake Stevens, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Highway 9 to close this weekend in south Lake Stevens

Detours take drivers around the closure between 20th Street SE and 32nd Street SE from Friday night to Monday morning.

Empty shelves in the baby formula section at a grocery store in Lynnwood, Washington. (Jacqueline Allison / The Herald)
Amid baby formula shortage, local moms scrambling to feed babies

Shelves are bare and prices are up. But there are resources for Snohomish County mothers in need.

Everett
$1 million bail for Everett ampm shooting suspect

The suspect, 36, is accused of shooting an acquaintance Monday, dumping the gun in a dumpster and fleeing from police.

Logo for news use featuring Snohomish County, Washington. 220118
Snohomish County seeks input on spending American Rescue Plan dollars

In-person events across the county will help guide more than $80 million in federal recovery money.

Mandy Jeffcott and Aaron King explore the area beneath a highway underpass while conducting a PIT count Tuesday, Feb. 22, 2022, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Snohomish County homelessness rose to 10-year high, count shows

Data released Monday confirmed what advocates suspected: The local homeless population grew amid the pandemic.

Sam Bowles records the run off the water from a chalk drawing with friend and co-artist, Rhyanna Mercer, Tuesday afternoon in Everett, Washington on May 10, 2022.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Jackson High’s global TikTok star is chalk full of ideas

Sam Bowles, 18, uses vibrant videos and social media fame to raise awareness of autism.

Dan Bates / The Herald
When Seattle Genetics founder, Clay Siegall lost his father while in college, he switched from studying for an MD to studying for a PhD., and a goal to treat cancer patients.  His efforts are paying off in lives.
Bothell biotech CEO resigns after domestic-violence allegation

Clay Siegall co-founded Seagen, which develops therapies for cancer patients. He’s accused of attacking his wife.

Everett
Nonprofit offers free mental wellness event for local teens

The Saturday gathering at EvCC, sponsored by Leadership Launch, is for teens in eighth grade through college.

Logo for news use featuring Snohomish County, Washington. 220118
3.6-magnitude earthquake jars awake Darrington residents

The quake and aftershocks did not cause any serious damage. They’re reminders of dozens of faults that lie below.

Most Read