West Liberty man pleads guilty to HAZMAT violations

Henry Culvyhouse, The Daily Independent, Ashland, Ky.
·2 min read

Mar. 3—ASHLAND — A West Liberty man accused of dumping toxic sludge in Kentucky from a fracking site in North Central West Virginia pleaded guilty last week to two counts of violating the Hazardous Materials Transportation Act, according to a Feb. 24 federal court filing.

Cory David Hoskins, the former owner of Advanced TENORM Services entered the plea in exchange for 20 other violations being dropped — as well as a five counts of mail fraud being dismissed.

Hoskins was indicted last year after a grand jury determined he had illegally dumped toxic sludge from Fairmont Brine Processing, an outfit in West Virginia that processed the sludge generated from fracking sites in 2015 and 2016.

TENORM (Technologically Enhanced Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material) is a by-product of fracking that may contain harmful chemicals like uranium, thorium, radium and lead, according to the EPA.

According to the plea agreement, Hoskins agreed with the president of Fairmont Brine to transport the waste water and dispose of it properly. The agreement shows he agreed to transport, solidify and dispose of 35 blue vacuum packed containers with sludge inside, each holding 25 yards of the material.

While Hoskins knew the materials needed to be transported by HAZMAT standards and told Fairmont Brine he had the capability to properly test it and dispose of it, the agreement states.

Instead, he got non-HAZMAT trucks to transport the material and told drivers it did not require HAZMAT endorsement.

Federal court records show the shipments were dumped in Estill County, while state records filed in a bankruptcy proceeding shows they also landed in Greenup County as well.

State records also show Hoskins was hauling waste from other outfits in Ohio, too.

Hoskins is due back in federal court June 30 for sentencing in Covington, where he faces up to five years in prison each conviction.

(606) 326-2653 — henry@dailyindependent.com