President of Pennsylvania Hazmat Packaging Firm Sentenced and Ordered to Pay $300,000 in Restitution
On February 3, 2016, Frank Menichini, the operator of DVG Packaging of Exton, PA, was sentenced in U.S. District Court, Philadelphia, PA, to 6 months home confinement, 36 months' probation, and 100 hours of community service, and ordered to pay $300,000 in restitution. Previously, in November 2015, Menichini pleaded guilty to falsifying certifications related to hazardous material packaging with the intent to obstruct an investigation within the jurisdiction of the U.S. Department of Transportation.
DVG manufactured flexible plastic packaging used in the transportation of infectious substances related to the health care industry. The packaging was often used in air transportation and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) required that these packages pass required strength and pressure tests to ensure the packaging withstood the internal pressure associated with aircraft transport. To ensure transportation safety, PHMSA sets mandatory standards for hazardous materials packaging, including packaging designed to carry infectious substances. In addition, PHMSA regulations require manufacturers to demonstrate and certify that the associated packaging meets those pressure test standards.
Menichini admitted that he falsified documents and records related to the package pressure tests. In addition, he admitted that he supplied false reports to both PHMSA inspectors and DVG customers that incorrectly showed the packages met PHMSA requirements. Menichini also admitted that he falsified test result documents to impede and obstruct a PHMSA inspection.
We conducted this investigation with substantial assistance provided by PHMSA.