Politics & Government

Sumner company fined for spilling vinegar into White River

The state is fining Fleischmann’s Vinegar Co. of Sumner $10,000 for spilling vinegar into the White River in March.

The company violated its waste-water discharge permit by allowing 10,000 gallons of concentrated vinegar to spill into the river, according to the Department of Ecology.

The acidic liquid can harm aquatic insects, fish and amphibians when released, but no fish were found dead, the agency said.

“Fortunately, the flow in the river was high at the time of the spill, which helped to minimize environmental effects,” Rich Doenges, an Ecology Water Quality Program manager, said in a release Wednesday.

The company has removed the faulty valve that caused the spill and replaced the bypass line with two pipes, “eliminating the possibility of an accidental release,” the Ecology Department stated.

Fleischmann’s Vinegar can appeal within 30 days to the Pollution Control Hearings Board.

In June 2014, the company was fined $23,000 for spilling 2,000 gallons of concentrated vinegar into the ground and stormwater pools.

A manager from the plant was not available for comment.

Kenny Ocker: 253-597-8627, @KennyOcker