Monday, May 31, 2004

McWane Employee Admits Illegal Dumping

A day after a grand jury has brought 25 charges against the McWane Corporation for environmental crimes, including illegal dumping, a former McWane manager told prosecutors of illegal dumping by the company.
McWane Inc. flooded Avondale Creek with millions of gallons of water poisoned by heavy metals over a period of years, a former employee has told prosecutors.

Don Harbin, the former manager of McWane's northern Birmingham plant, told prosecutors Wednesday that he directed workers to dump the contaminated water at night.

Harbin has agreed to plead guilty to environmental crimes and is assisting the government's prosecution of Birmingham-based McWane, one of the top four U.S. makers of water and sewer pipes.
McWane was the focus of a 2003 NY Times/Frontline series about the high number of workplace injuries and fatalities at that company's facilities.