State regulators have ordered an investigation to determine if hazardous wastes dumped in a Spokane Valley landfill threaten human health or the environment.
Officials with the Department of Ecology want to know if waste metals and construction debris disposed of at the Old Inland Pit between 1978 and 1986 need to be cleaned up.
The pit is in the 3500 block of North Sullivan, across the street from the entrance to the Spokane Industrial Park.
They have ordered the owners of the pit and those who dumped materials into it to pay for the study. Some of them have agreed to do so.
The landfill was a gravel mine operated by Inland Asphalt Co. When the company finished mining the site, it used the pit to dispose of both authorized and unauthorized wastes.
Ecology records show that Inland Asphalt, Central Pre-Mix Co. and Spokane Industries Inc. dumped construction debris, broken clay tiles and metallic dust from a steel foundry there.
In 1983, officials tested some of the metallic dust dumped at the pit and found that it was considered a dangerous waste under state law.
In 1986, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency nominated the pit as a high-priority cleanup site.
Ecology now wants to know if the site should indeed be cleaned up.
A copy of the order for investigation issued by Ecology is available at the county library, 12004 E. Main, and at Ecology’s Spokane office, 4601 N. Monroe.
The department will accept written comments on the order until April 14.
Letters should be sent to Roxane Broadhead, Department of Ecology, 4601 N. Monroe, Spokane, WA 99205-1295.
If the investigation shows that the site is a threat, Ecology will write a cleanup plan. The owners and dumpers would be liable for paying for that cleanup.