By Jennifer Mayerle


MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) –  A Twin Cities manufacturing plant at the center of a number of pollution investigations now faces more trouble.

On Wednesday, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency served Water Gremlin with a new administrative order. This time it deals with hazardous waste.

According to the MPCA, the agency determined Water Gremlin failed to comply with hazardous waste regulations that minimize the possibility of a release of hazardous waste at its White Bear Township facility.

Inspectors dropped in at the manufacturing plant that makes fishing sinkers and battery terminal posts in White Bear Township three times in September.

According to the documents, they found a number of violations involving oil, lead and a toxic chemical called TCE, known to cause cancer and birth defects.

In just one instance, hazardous waste contaminated with TCE and lead was “observed on the floor.” Employees were allowed to walk from inside to outside — potentially tracking hazardous waste outside the facility, the document said.

The MPCA has given Water Gremlin 24 hours to make some immediate changes, while it has up to 30 days to take care of other issues.

Last week, the Health Department and Department of Labor shut down the plant after a WCCO report revealed kids of employees had been poisoned by take home lead from the facility.

A judge ruled the facility needed to be cleaned and workers had to be trained on lead safety before re-opening on Tuesday.

All parties will be back for a court hearing at 11 a.m. Wednesday, where a judge will be reviewing the operation and determining how much progress has been made.

Jennifer Mayerle

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