FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
FRIDAY, DECEMBER 19, 2003
TDD (202) 514-1888
EMERY WORLDWIDE AIRLINES SENTENCED FOR MULTIPLE VIOLATIONS OF
THE HAZARDOUS MATERIALS TRANSPORTATION ACT
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Tom Sansonetti, Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division and Gregory G. Lockhart, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, announced today that Emery Worldwide Airlines, Inc. has been sentenced for multiple violations of the Hazardous Material Transportation Act. U.S. District Judge Walter Herbert Rice ordered Emery to pay the maximum $6 million fine ($500,000 for each of the 12 counts) and placed the company on probation for three years. During its period of probation, Emery will implement and maintain a compliance program designed to detect and prevent future violations.
“With the sheer amount of hazardous materials begin shipped on our nation’s infrastructure, we must track down and bring to justice those who violate our transportation laws,” said Tom Sansonetti, Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division. “Today’s sentencing sends a strong message that this Administration is focused on reducing the potentially sever consequences of a hazardous materials incident.”
“With this case, we have taken a great step forward in protecting the safety of the people involved in the cargo transportation industry,” said Gregory G. Lockhart, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio. “Other companies in the industry are aware of these proceedings and should learn from the mistakes of Emery.”
Emery Worldwide Airlines is a wholly owned subsidiary of CNF, Inc. specialized in air transportation services for business to business shippers of heavyweight cargo. Its major operational hub is near the Dayton International Airport in Vandalia, Ohio. Emery’s operations included the transportation of freight classified as hazardous material under regulations issued by the Department of Transportation.
On September 30, 2003, Emery Worldwide Airlines, Inc. pled guilty to violating a DOT regulation that requires the operator of an aircraft transporting hazardous materials to give the pilot in command of the aircraft written notification of hazardous material loaded on the plane. By its plea, Emery admitted that on twelve occasions between November 1998 and July 1999 it transported hazardous material on aircraft leaving the hub without providing the required written notification to the pilot. The type of hazardous materials involved included freight classified as flammable liquid, non-flammable gas, explosive and radioactive materials, and miscellaneous dangerous goods.