News Release

T – 11 – 20
Meredith Williams, Director

September 23, 2020

Contact: Gamaliel Ortiz
(916) 869-5422

Water Treatment Chemical Company in Stockton Pays $32K Penalty For Hazardous Waste Accumulation

Enforcement Initiative Coordinated with CalEPA Environmental Justice Task Force

SACRAMENTO – The Department of Toxic Substances Control announced today that Thatcher Company of California, in Stockton, has agreed to pay a penalty of $32,480 for its unauthorized accumulation of hazardous waste and failure to determine if a waste generated onsite was hazardous.

Thatcher, a producer and distributor of water treatment chemicals, failed to meet state Health and Safety Code guidelines for companies that accumulate hazardous waste, a DTSC inspection concluded.

Additionally, the company failed to determine if waste generated onsite was hazardous when it held multiple containers of hydrotest wash water on site, which DTSC’s tests determined were corrosive and contained soluble chromium, copper, lead, and nickel. The metals could cause a range of health ailments, including skin irritation, organ failure, and cancer, depending on levels of exposure through inhalation or ingestion.

DTSC’s inspection also uncovered other improper hazardous waste storage at the site, including containers with unsecured lids and lacking proper labeling for safety in violation of the state’s Health and Safety Code.

Thatcher makes water treatment chemicals that are made of varying concentrations of bleach. The company is considered a large-quantity generator of hazardous waste by the San Joaquin County Environmental Health Department, which serves as the regional Certified Unified Program Agency.

CalEPA’s Environmental Justice Task Force supported the enforcement initiative that led to this penalty. The task force coordinates compliance and enforcement work of various departments and offices in disadvantaged communities that are burdened by multiple sources of pollution and are disproportionately vulnerable to its effects.

Among the task force’s goals, it provides communities with opportunities for input on environmental concerns and their proposed remedies.

The Consent Order for this action is available online.

# # #

FOR GENERAL INQUIRIES: Contact the Department of Toxic Substances Control by phone at (800) 728-6942 or visit To report illegal handling, discharge, or disposal of hazardous waste, call the Waste Alert Hotline at (800) 698-6942.

The mission of DTSC is to protect California’s people and environment from harmful effects of toxic substances by restoring contaminated properties, enforcing hazardous waste law, reducing hazardous waste generation, and encouraging the manufacture of chemically safer products.