June 10, 2019
Trucking Company Ordered To Pay $3 Million After Illegally Transporting Hazardous Materials
On June 10, 2019, Wiley Sanders Truck Lines, Inc. (Wiley Sanders), was sentenced in U.S. District Court, Los Angeles, California, to 3 years’ probation and over $3 million in penalties—specifically, a $1.5 million fine; a $1.5 million community service payment to the Exide Residential Assistance Fund; and a special assessment of $1,200.
The investigation revealed that on separate occasions—in August and November 2013 and again in March 2014—Wiley Sanders used semi-trucks to transport more than 64 tons of battery recycling waste without authorized packaging. The hazardous material was moved from the now-closed Exide Technologies battery recycling facility in Vernon, California, to a company in Bakersfield, California. On February 5, 2019, Wiley Sanders admitted in a plea agreement to willfully and recklessly transporting 128,840 pounds of lead-contaminated plastic chips, knowing that the trailers it used did not contain lining or inner packing material to prevent liquids and semi-solids from leaking through cracks and other openings.
The Los Angeles Department of Public Health established the Exide Residential Assistance Fund to support residents affected by lead contamination near the facility in Vernon.
DOT-OIG conducted this investigation with EPA-CID and the California Department of Toxic Substances Control.