ROCKTON, Ill. (WTVO) — People who live near the Chemtool plant in Rockton can expect to see some heavy equipment starting Monday.
Rockton’s Mayor John Peterson said that cleanup will begin. It comes after the Illinois Attorney General and the Winnebago County State’s Attorney ordered the company to ensure cleanup efforts comply with environmental laws.
In the injunction, Chemtool had to submit a plan on how to identify, store and properly dispose of any chemicals still on the site, as well as send in a schedule to demo and decontaminate the plant within 14 days. The Illinois EPA will be overseeing it.
An outside contractor at the plant hit a pipe back on June 14, 2021. Mineral oil spilled onto the floor and caught fire. About 70 employees were working at the time, but no one was hurt.
There were dozens of explosions and the fire burned for several days. Everyone within one mile of the plant was forced to evacuate from their homes.
The evacuation order was lifted four days later.