Massive toilet dump leads to $125,000 fine for Ottawa waste company

OTTAWA – An Ottawa waste company that dumped hundreds of used toilets in a former quarry has been fined $125,000.

The Ontario Ministry of the Environment says an investigation showed Lacombe Waste Services was contracted to remove used toilets from a local hospital in a retrofit project.

The ministry says the company dumped two loads of approximately 500 used toilets in plastic bags between November 3, 2011 and March 15, 2012 on a property that was not an approved waste disposal site.

Ministry spokeswoman Kate Jordan says the company needed to take them to a waste disposal site to be properly managed because they contained rubber, plastic seats, handles and other materials.

The ministry says a separate investigation found that Lacombe had also failed to properly decontaminate tankers used to transport various liquid wastes.

The company left a load of wastewater to be contaminated by industrial fuels and oils and the ministry requires tankers to be properly cleaned when hauling different types of waste.

Lacombe was fined $100,000 in addition to a victim fine surcharge of $25,000.

All fines were paid immediately after the conviction, the ministry said in a release.

“It’s cheaper to pay the fine than to fight the government,” Lacombe’s president Tom Neilson told The Canadian Press without providing any further comment.

Environment Minister Jim Bradley said polluters should be aware that the government “will vigorously pursue charges when our environmental laws are broken.”

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