HARDWARE STORES

Inspectors dive into Depot’s dumpsters

BY HBSDealer Staff

Between 2013 and 2015, inspectors searched home center dumpsters in California, looking for violations of waste disposal rules. This week, a judge ordered Home Depot to pay $27.84 million in connection with allegations that the company unlawfully disposed of hazardous waste.

Alameda County Superior Court Judge Brad Seligman has ordered Georgia-based Home Depot to pay the amount to resolve allegations that Home Depot unlawfully disposed of hazardous wastes and discarded records without rendering private customer information unreadable.

A Home Depot spokesman told California TV station NBC 7: “We’re pleased to have settled this, and we remain committed to the responsible disposal of waste. We’ll continue to work with California officials to that end.”

According to the Yolo County District Attorney’s office, 45 Home Depot dumpsters were inspected. “Every one of these dumpsters contained hazardous waste, including pesticides, aerosols, paint and colorants, solvents, adhesives, batteries, mercury-containing fluorescent bulbs, electronic waste, key shavings, and other toxic, ignitable, and corrosive materials,” according to a release. “Many of the dumpsters also contained discarded records containing sensitive customer information that had not been shredded or rendered unreadable, including customer names, addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses.”

Under the final judgment, Home Depot must pay $18.487 million in civil penalties and costs, and an additional $2.513 million to fund supplemental environmental projects furthering consumer protection and environmental enforcement in California.

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