Cleanup set to begin at Hercules plant

Cleanup set to begin at Hercules plant

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - The old chemical plant in Hattiesburg, known as the Hercules site, will undergo a material disposal on July 13.

The Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality said a blending process is scheduled to begin in the impoundment basin, which is under a large white structure, to "stabilize the materials left from Hercules" before they are sent to a landfill.

Robbie Wilbur, MDEQ's Communications Director, said the materials would be sampled before they are disposed to make sure they meet all requirements for disposal.

"All of these steps are in place by MDEQ and EPA to ensure that the work is continuing to be done in a manner that protects the environment and the residents in the area," Wilbur said.

He also said the white structure surrounding the basin would protect it from rain and provide environmental control for the air handling equipment in place to control vapors the could result from the blending process.

MDEQ said air monitoring equipment was in place around the site, and updates are provided to "local leadership and the community on a regular basis."

Hercules was a Delaware-based chemical manufacturer that first opened in Hattiesburg in the 1920s and closed in 2009.