U-Haul settles with Calif. AG

by Kathy Woods |
Aug. 25, 2009, 11:00am

Jerry Brown (D)

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (Legal Newsline)-Following a two year investigation, Attorney General Jerry Brown and eight district attorneys across California have forced U-Haul to change its handling of hazardous materials.

The attorney general and other officials had claimed that U-Haul had been ignoring California's hazardous materials laws for years. In settling the lawsuit, the company agreed to pay $2 million in costs and penalties as well as implement a set of new practices.

"This agreement forces U-Haul to clean up its act and improve the way it handles hazardous materials, plans for emergencies and trains employees." Brown said in a statement.

The investigation concluded that at almost all of U-Haul's 179 California regulated facilities there were violations. These violations included: inadequate training of how to handle hazardous materials, improper storage of hazardous materials, improper transport of hazardous materials and lack of business plans and emergency response plans.

The lawsuit -- which was filed on July 27, 2006 -- sought penalties and permanent injunctions against U-Haul to try and force the company to comply with California's hazardous material laws.

Under the agreement, U-Haul had agreed to complete and maintain hazardous material business and emergency plans, train employees properly on the handling of hazardous materials, retain a environmental coordinator to oversee, monitor and submit annual reports on the companies compliance, inspect hazardous waste storage areas weekly and properly transport hazardous waste.

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