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HARBOR AREA : Firm to Face Charges in Port Petroleum Spill

January 27, 1994

M.T. Inc., the company that operates Matson Terminals, has been charged with polluting water in Los Angeles Harbor last June.

About 250 gallons of petroleum-based hydraulic fluid leaked from drums where it had been stored in the facility's maintenance yard on Terminal Island, and rain on June 5 and 6 washed it into the ocean, said Mike Qualls, a spokesman for the Los Angeles city attorney's office.

The leak was discovered by a Matson security guard during a night patrol. The guard reported the spill to supervisors who told authorities and hired a private company to contain and clean up the spill, Qualls said.

Arraignment is scheduled Feb. 24 in Los Angeles Municipal Court on two counts of allowing petroleum products to flow into state waters and two counts of allowing a substance harmful to fish, plants or birds to contaminate state waters. If found guilty of the charges, the company could be fined up to $6,000.

M.T. Inc. spokesmen could not be reached for comment.

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