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Owner of Connecticut Company Pleads Guilty to Hazardous Materials (HazMat) Violations

On August 23, Kirk Beattie, owner and operator of New England Ski and Scuba (NES&S) Vernon, CT, pled guilty in U.S. District Court in Hartford, CT to a charge of willfully violating criminal statutes related to DOT HazMat regulations regarding testing and certification of compressed gas cylinders. Failure to perform accurate periodic hydrostatic retesting of gas cylinders is a transportation hazard as well as places cylinder users (e.g., scuba divers and firefighters) at risk. Between January 2003 and May 2004, Beattie stamped compressed gas cylinders as tested without having performed required hydrostatic testing. He also admitted failing to verify accuracy of retest equipment and to train, test, and certify NES&S employees filling and retesting cylinders. Sentencing is scheduled for November 10. The case was investigated jointly with the FBI, with assistance from PHMSA.