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Hog Farm Cited for Waste Lagoon Failure

The DC Mills Farms Inc. animal waste lagoon failure on Dec. 21 released about 1 million gallons of untreated animal waste in Jones County.

As a result, the state Department of Environmental Quality Division of Water Resources has issued a notice of violation and intent to enforce to the Trenton-based company.

The notice points to multiple violations under a swine waste management permit including failure to prevent the discharge of animal waste to surface waters, failure to designate an Operator in Charge, and failure to notify the public, according to the division.

The notice also lists several required actions such as providing water resources with a plan of action for the repair of the lagoon, designating an operator with a valid certification, and issuing a press release.

Division staff inspected DC Mills Farm and determined the animal waste discharge came from a hole that formed, allowing wastewater to exit about 100 feet southeast of the lagoon. The animal waste flowed into Tuckahoe Creek, which feeds into the Trent River.

The division will continue to investigate the extent of the environmental impact and the cause of the failure. Violations of state water quality standards or other regulations will be subject to further enforcement, according to the state.

DC Mills Farms was given 10 days to provide its written response, which will be reviewed and considered by division staff before the agency determines whether to issue a civil penalty.

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Staff Report

The story was compiled by staff members of Coastal Review Online.