250 abandoned barrels of chemicals were discovered during inspections by the Ministry of the Interior and REWI (Regional Environment and Water Inspection)-Sofia in several urban areas.
Following reports of illegally dumping barrels in the Iskar, Pancharevo, and Kremikovtsi regions. REWI-Sofia experts conducted on-site inspections alongside staff members of the 8th RA MDIA (Metropolitan Directorate of Internal Affairs), Sofia Municipality, Metropolitan Inspectorate, Metropolitan Directorate “Fire Safety and Protection of the Population,” and representatives of the regional administrations.
125 barrels of chemicals were discovered during the examination in the Iskar region at four different sites. 42 barrels were found at two houses in the Pancharevo region, while 83 barrels were found unlawfully dumped in the Kremikovtsi district.
During the visits, it was discovered that several different properties had abandoned barrels, some of which had broken integrity and doubtful contents. Labels on some of the barrels list hazardous chemicals to people and the environment. Some of them lack labels, have cracked, or have illegible or broken labels.
The Metropolitan Directorate of Internal Affairs collected samples for analysis to determine the contents of the barrels and the compliance with the labels applied to some of them. REWI-Sofia has instructed the regional administrations to take action to secure and clean up the affected areas by a specific date. Security tape is used to enclose and isolate contaminated sites. Following the instructions, 95 of the barrels were moved to a location that met the specifications for storage.
The evacuation of the remaining barrels continues, and soil tests will be taken in the areas where Environmental Executive Agency workers have found spills. Sanctions will be enforced on the regional administrations if it turns out that the provided injunctions have not been followed during the inspections. The facts and circumstances surrounding the abandoned barrels are still being established through continuing efforts.