Records of Violations and Complaints for Dutra's Petaluma Asphalt Plant
See Press Democrat Article titled: PETALUMA QUARRY CITED FOR AIR QUALITY VIOLATION. Does it sound like a great idea to allow them to build a new larger asphalt plant now?
See Public Information Records Request from the Bay Area Air Quality Management District. Not only did the Dutra Group have complaints, they received several "Notice of Violations" had to pay fines and Aimi Dutra was mentioned in one of the reports as being aware of the complaint.
On October 23rd, 2000, they received a complaint of "Burnt Rubber."
On November 2nd, 2000, they received a complaint of "Gray Smoke."
On November 3rd, 2000, they received a complaint of "Burning Rubber."
Also from the BAAQMD a compilation of Notice of Violations:
On May 10th, 1999, Dutra Materials had one violation for Regulation 8, Rule 7, Section 311. They had an above ground gasoline tank that was required to have a submerged fill tube and a p/v valve and the facilities manager stated he had no idea he was required to have this equipment. A Notice of Violation was issued and a penalty was recommended to the BAAQMD via their inspector. The correct piece was not installed for 7 days. This is noted by the inspector in the report.
On May 21st, 2004, an inspection of Dutra records by a BAAQMD inspector discovered that the Dutra Materials Petaluma had failed to comply with their permit condition of 15 round trip barge trips per any 12 month period. According to facility records they had allowed 19 barge trips for the year. They were issued a Notice of Violation and the matter was referred to the BAAQMD's Legal Division to determine the applicable days of violations and recommended penalty. As a result Dutra submitted a permit condition increase. This shows me that if you give them a permit for a certain allowable use they will meet and potentially exceed it. And maybe without advising anyone.
On August 14th, 2000, a BAAQMD Inspector received notice of a possible violation of visible emissions at Dutra Materials asphalt batch in Petaluma. The notice was of white smoke and odor. The inspector arrived and observed emissions and began testing the emissions. The facility was determined to be in violation of regulations stating: "...a person shall not emit from any source for a period or periods aggregating more than three minutes in any hour, a visible emission which is as dark or darker than No. 1 on the Ringelmann Chart, or of such opacity as to obscure an observer's view to an equivalent or greater degree." See that attached picture that the inspector drew displaying his observations. A penalty was issued for this violation. In the Statements section of this report it says the following regarding Aimi Dutra's knowledge of this report: "The visible emission was determined to be white smoke. Two considerations regarding the cause of the smoke were reviewed. It may be that the asphalt "oil" is contaminated. Or it may be the smoke was caused by operator error in firing the plant. Both possibilities are being investigated. On follow up RI [Reporting Inspector] spoke with Aimi Dutra respresenting the "Dutra Group" (Parent Corporation). The circumstances of the violation were reviewed . Aimi was looking at the discontinued use of the specific oil thought to be responsible for the smoke production."
On October 25th, 2000, a BAAQMD Inspector received two complaints of violations of visible emissions. "Since the day of violation two additional days of violation have been documented and held pending the variance, more days of violation are expected. Investigation in to why the facility has visible emissions problems is continuing. It is known that the excess smoke is directly related to the manufacture of an asphalt blend that has a percentage of ground automotive tires that replace part of the rock. The facility is being required to manufacture this material as part of a CalTrans contract. No CalTrans official could say if air pollution regulations were a consideration." This report continues to discuss whether rubberized asphalt can ever be produced safely. Dutra stated that there were similar problems occurring in a Southern California plant. The report concluded with: "This appears to be an issue beyond just this facility and it remains
questionable if any plant and manufacture "rubberized" asphalt can be in compliance. The product also produces a strong odor of burning tires that leads to odor complaints and the very real possibility of a public nuisance." Again, the inspector drew a diagram of what he saw. I have attached that picture. He noted that the "smoke was from silo and trucks with product."
On October 18th, 2005, a BAAQMD Inspector observed a plume of dust while driving on highway 101 North in Petaluma. He traced the source of dust to a crusher and conveyer belt operating at Dutra. "He drove to the top of the Hill and took visible emission readings northwest of the conveyer and crusher. Dutra was in the process of moving the plant to a new location, but the crusher and conveyer belt were still set up and operating to finish a project. The dust was coming from the top of the conveyer belt as materials were loaded and at the top as material was dumped into the crusher." The inspector was told that DeSilva Contracting was doing subcontracting work and had been watering down their area but Dutra had not been watering down their area. Dutra was issued a Notice of Violation for one day of visible emissions and a penalty was recommended.
A search in BAAQMD online records shows more:
From the Board of Directors' Regular Meeting Agendas found online:
February 20, 2008 - Page 39 states: These Facilities have received one or more Notices of Violations. Report period: October 1, 2007-December 31, 2007. Page 40 lists the facilities and Dutra's violation dated 12/21/2007.
June 16th, 2004 - Page 17 states: These Facilities have received one or more Notices of Violations. Report period: May 1, 2004-May 31, 2004.Page 19 lists the facilities including Dutra's violation dated 5/19/2004.
March 15, 2006 - Page 9 states: These Facilities have received one or more Notices of Violations. Report period: February 1, 2006- February 28, 2006. Page 11 lists the facilities including Dutra's violation dated 2/06/2006.