Investigation: Land Owner Fined for Hazardous Rail Ties

Created: 12/31/2013 7:16 PM KAALtv.com
By: Ellery McCardle

(ABC 6 NEWS) -- Its been one month since a deadline passed to get thousands of hazardous rail ties off a Freeborn County property. Now fines are in the thousands of dollars for the land owner.

We recently received a letter from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency. It's from a Cedar Rapids company stating it's agreed to receive the ties from Brad Wedge's land.

The problem now is getting them to Iowa.

The letter from BFC Gas and Electric Companies states it prefers to get those ties by train. We spoke with Wedge Monday. He says he's trying to find someone to load up the ties onto rail cars.

Thousands of hazardous rail ties have been on his land since August of 2012. Under MPCA regulations they cannot be there. Wedge told us this past summer he wants the rail ties off his land as soon as possible.

Not meeting the November 30th deadline means big fines from the MPCA. We're told Wedge owes some $15,000 so far. The agency can take further action against him, but says it's waiting to see how this Cedar Rapids deal works out.