August 2, 2014

Elyria
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Lorain workers disciplined for water problem

LORAIN – Failure to notify the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency promptly about water contamination has led to Utility Department Director Corey Timko being suspended 30 days and Assistant Superintendent James Miller being fired.

In addition to the firing and suspension, Lorain Public Service and Safety Director Robert J. Gilchrist said Mark Petrie, lead operator for purification at the water plant, has been placed on paid administrative leave pending completion of an investigation into the matter.

The disciplinary action was related to the failure of water department officials to notify the EPA within 24 hours of turbidity, a minor contamination that did not compromise the safety of the water, according to the department.

EPA spokesman Mike Settles said his agency should’ve been promptly notified in order for it to have decided whether a boil alert was necessary. By the time notification was made, Settles said, the problem was rectified. The agency ordered the city to send out notification letters to residents about the contamination.

EDITOR’S NOTE: The original version of this story incorrectly stated the punishments for Mark Petrie and James Miller.