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April 1, 2013
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Vail Resort's Heavenly Mountain levied with $90K in fines

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. - Heavenly Mountain Resort on Lake Tahoe's south shore has been fined more than $90,000 for several violations of California environmental laws.

The violations stem from a 2010 inspection of the ski resort and its upper maintenance shop, California Department of Toxic Substances Control officials said.

The resort was accused of failing to have controls to prevent spillage of a used-oil tank, failing to have the tank assessed and inspected, failing to maintain secondary containment for the tank and connected pipes, and failing to provide refresher training to a hazardous waste manager.

In addition, aerosol cans were not properly disposed of, and the resort lacked a required eyewash and shower for employees who became contaminated with hazardous waste, according to a February court filing.

"Compliance with the Hazardous Waste Control Law is vital to protecting the environment close to Lake Tahoe," said Paul Kewin, assistant deputy director of the department's Enforcement and Emergency Response Program. "This settlement signifies the department's continuing efforts to uphold both environmental safety and compliance with existing law."

Heavenly was penalized $94,000 for the violations and charged $26,000 to cover the Department of Toxic Substances Control's administrative costs, the agency said.

Resort spokesman Russ Pecoraro stressed there was no spill associated with the violations.

He told the Tahoe Daily Tribune that the area where the violations occurred is not near any perennial streams and is far from Lake Tahoe.

The resort has worked with the department to ensure it is following environmental regulations, Pecoraro said, and Heavenly currently is in compliance.

A new waste oil tank was installed at the upper maintenance shop above the California Lodge in May, according to the court filing.

Heavenly is owned by Colorado-based Vail Resorts Inc. Vail Resorts also operates Northstar and Kirkwood in the Lake Tahoe area; Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, Keystone and Vail in Colorado; Afton Alps near Minneapolis; and Mount Brighton near Detroit.


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The Summit Daily Updated Apr 1, 2013 11:47PM Published Apr 1, 2013 11:46PM Copyright 2013 The Summit Daily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.