CALLS from Daylesford community members concerned about contaminated soil have led to a more than $8000 fine.
The Environment Protection Authority Victoria found Sunshine West company Future Fuel Services Pty Ltd had been dumping soil from a service station on a subdivision development site at Daylesford.
EPA north west regional manager Dr Scott Pigdon said the investigation started after callers reported truckloads of suspected contaminated soil being deposited at the property.
"They described how the soil smelled of diesel fuel," Dr Pigdon said.
"Investigating EPA officers found the soil was from excavations on a nearby service station in Daylesford. The service station was undergoing an upgrade, and the soil was being deposited as clean fill for a property development.
"EPA testing showed the deposited soils were contaminated with hydrocarbons, such as diesel, and sufficiently contaminated to be classified as prescribed industrial waste, which is subject to legal controls in both its handling and disposal."
Future Fuel Services was fined $8261 for depositing industrial waste at a place that was not licensed to accept it.
The company was also required to clean up the dumping site.
The EPA said the Future Fuel Services had complied with the regulatory notice.
"This case is a clear warning that you can't just dig up, transport and dump contaminated soil without the proper protections for the community and the environment," Dr Pigdon said.
"Any member of the public can report your suspicious activity, and if it constitutes an offence under the Environment Protection Act 1970, EPA can investigate, fine the offender and make them clean it up."
Future Fuel Services has the right to have the fine reviewed or have the matter heard and determined by a court.
The EPA detected the offence on October 5.
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