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Fanling garage and scrap metal dealer fined for illegal handling and collection of chemical waste
     A garage owner and a scrap metal dealer in Fanling who were involved in illegal handling and collection of waste lead acid batteries (WLABs) were convicted and fined a total of $27,000 at Fanling Magistrates' Courts today (October 24) for contravening the Waste Disposal Ordinance (WDO) and the Waste Disposal (Chemical Waste) (General) Regulation.

     During a blitz operation in Fanling this March, Environmental Protection Department (EPD) staff found the owner of a garage delivering about 20 WLABs to a scrap metal shop on Lok Yip Road. About 40 WLABs were later found being stored at the recycling premises. Subsequent investigations confirmed that the scrap metal dealer did not possess a licence for collecting WLABs, which are classified as chemical waste, while the garage owner illegally sold WLABs to an unlicensed scrap metal dealer. The EPD prosecuted the garage owner and the scrap metal dealer concerned according to the WDO and the Regulation. Both defendants pleaded guilty to the charges today.

     An EPD spokesman said that discarded waste vehicle batteries which contain sulphuric acid and lead are classified as chemical waste requiring proper disposal. They must be delivered by licensed chemical waste collectors to licensed chemical waste treatment facilities for disposal. The spokesman also reminded those engaged in the businesses of vehicle repairing and scrap metal dealing that they must register with the EPD as a chemical waste producer for the WLABs produced. WLABs should be properly packed, labelled and stored in accordance with legal requirements to avoid leakage of toxic materials from the batteries which will pollute the environment. Anyone who produces, collects and disposes of chemical waste not in accordance with the law is liable to a maximum fine of $200,000 and six months' imprisonment upon first conviction.
Ends/Tuesday, October 24, 2017
Issued at HKT 15:15
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