DEQ says barrels transported to chemical plant were later found in Washington.

Correction appended.

         The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality has fined a Portland-area business more than $50,000 after it allegedly transported hazardous waste from Hillsboro in an improper manner.

Last month, DEQ fined International Resource Management Inc., which does business in the Portland area as WasteXpress, $50,400.

According to the DEQ, WasteXpress transported more than 4,100 gallons of hazardous chemicals from SolarWorld's headquarters on Evergreen Road to Portland chemical plant Apollo Chemicals between 2010 and 2011. DEQ officials said the company transported highly flammable chemicals, called Kester flux, without required documentation.

Four years later, the Washington Department of Ecology found 30 drums of the SolarWorld chemical at a property in Yacolt, Wash., near Battle Ground. Government officials were given an anonymous tip that the chemicals had been dumped and burned on the property.

In 2017, DEQ fined SolarWorld $13,023 for its role in the incident. SolarWorld manufactures solar panels at 4050 N.E. Evergreen Road.

DEQ alleges the company also transported waste containing toxic concentrations from Benchmade Knife Company in January without required documentation.

"Your failure to comply with these requirements increases the risk that the public and/or the environment could be harmed by mismanaged hazardous waste," wrote DEQ compliance and enforcement manager Sarah Wheeler.

DEQ regulates the accumulation, storage, handling, transportation, treatment and disposal of hazardous waste.

WasteXpress has contested DEQ's findings. In a statement to the Tribune, the company said transportation of the chemical did not require a uniform hazardous waste manifest, as DEQ has alleged.

Editor's Note: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated DEQ's allegations against WasteXpress.

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