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Tacoma firm settles with Environmental Protection agency after selling wood preservatives with outdated labels

Post by Alexis Krell / The News Tribune on Feb. 28, 2013 at 10:33 pm |
February 28, 2013 10:33 pm

A Tacoma company will pay $35,336 for selling wood-treatment products with outdated warning labels, according to a settlement announced by the federal Environmental Protection Agency.

Gardner-Fields sold the preservatives to consumers and other companies after buying them from a Tennessee firm, which also was fined, the EPA said this week.

Memphis-based IBM Manufacturing agreed to pay $265,000, after failing to inform Gardner-Fields of label changes required by the EPA, according to the federal agency.

The labels were about 10 years old, and lacked information such as an update of the steps to take in case of emergency contact with the products, EPA official Chad Schulze said.

Examples of missing details include instructions to sip water if the preservative is ingested and to slowly rinse the eyes if contact is made with the preservative. Directions to physicians about treatment also were missing.

“These products were being sold to companies who were doing wood treatment as a service, and they were also being purchased by homeowners and do-it-yourself folks,” Schulze said.

About 3,000 gallons of products with the outdated labels were sold from September 2007 to 2008, he said.

The EPA started investigating in September 2008, and routinely collects sales records for the year prior in such cases, he said.

The products sold with outdated labels were ATCO Woodlast 2c 1423, ATCO Woodlast 2 RTU 1422, ATCO Woodlast 1420 and ATCO Shakelast 1441.

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