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General Grounds

Welcome to TCI of Alabama, LLC.  It is our honor to take this opportunity to let you see our facility / process and show you why TCI should become your service provider of choice.

TCI is situated on approximately 10 acres in Cogswell Industrial Park, Pell City, Alabama.  The facility was opened for business in 1989 and has become a leader as an environmental service provider.  We have 70,000 sq. ft. of fully lined space to process used / obsolete electrical equipment.  The Over 500 shop also has the added protection of steel plating to assure that high level fluids will remain inside our facility.  The entire floor of the facility was built in a concave manner to guarantee  that in the case of major leakage, all of the oil will be contained in the facility.

Over the time of operation, TCI has earned a stellar reputation in customer service and has an unparalleled record of environmental compliance.  We are fully permitted by the EPA and ADEM (Alabama Department of Environmental Management).

Upon arrival, your equipment will be received by our Material Receiving Department.  Large units will be unloaded with our 50 ton overhead crane, and smaller units will be unloaded by our forklift operators.  The material is staged in areas designated for received material, so the load and individual units can be identified, and the accuracy of the paperwork and material received can be checked.  After the accuracy of the paperwork and the units has been confirmed, the units are bar-coded so they can be identified throughout the process of turning them from used / obsolete equipment, into metals that can be given a second life as recycled products.  In addition, all of the material is checked for physical integrity to assure any leakage is contained in a manner that keeps our shop clean and safe.

The paperwork is passed on to our Receiving Coordinator for a final quality check and entry into our database.  After all of the information has been entered, paperwork is distributed to each department as needed.  At this point, the items can now be tracked through the process.  Each move that is made in the facility is reported and entered into the database to assure that we can tell the location of individual items at any point in the process.

The units are then sampled by our sampling team so we can determine if the items contain PCBs or are EPA non-regulated.  The samples are collected and a Chain of Custody is generated to assure that the PCB content will be attached from a data standpoint throughout it's life at our facility.  The accuracy is double-checked by the sampler, then the samples and Chain of Custody will be passed along to the laboratory for analysis.

Once the samples have been delivered to the laboratory, the accompanying Chain of Custody is check once again for accuracy.  The data will be entered into the laboratory database.  Following the samples will be extracted and then put on the gas chromatograph (GC).  After the samples have had an opportunity to run on the GC, one of TCI's analysts will analyze the data to determine the PCB content.  The results will be passed on to the Laboratory Manager, quality checked, and certified for return to the plant. 

Now that the plant knows the content of the material, the units are color coded to assure that everyone knows how to handle them in the future.  TCI uses orange for PCB units, gold for PCB contaminated units, and blue for non-regulated units.  It is at this time, that the units can be moved to be physically processed for recycling and or disposal.

Now all of the equipment can be drained of it's oil.  For this process, all of the oil is pumped to our tank farm.  Our tank farm contains 8 tanks in a self contained area.  Each tank has a specific purpose and designated PCB content.  All of our material will be pumped in place to lessen movement through the facility.

All of the low level material is worked in the <500 shop.  The material will be broken into smaller parts for recycling and disposal.  Within the <500 shop, there are many departments that specialize in certain types of equipment.  For instance, we have the following departments and functions:

  • Segregated Customer Areas (areas designated for special processing)
  • Slot Area (areas where all preliminary tasks can be carried out before physical processing, also for storage of smaller units)
  • Bushing Teardown Area (breaking down specialty items and bushings)
  • Disassembly Line (disassembly and cleaning of small units)
  • High Bay Area (storage, teardown, offloading and cleaning of large units)
  • Receiving Docks (offloading of smaller units that can be handled with forklifts)
  • Shipping Docks (for loading metals onto trucks for shipping)
  • Metals Sorting Area (formatting metals into the form they will need to be in to become recycled materials)
  • Wash Rack Area (cleaning of large transformer carcasses takes place)
  • Back Dock (area for storage of large non-regulated units)
  • Clean Metals Area (staging of metals that are ready to ship)
  • Office Area (supervisory / administrative functions take place)
  • Maintenance Area (all maintenance functions)
  • Equipment and Laundry Area ( work clothes are cleaned and all personal protective equipment is contained)

All metals in that contained PCB levels of 50-499 ppm, are cleaned either by the aqueous washing system, or our solvent degreasing system.  Following cleaning, all of the material is sampled and sent to the laboratory to assure that it is free of PCBs and can be used further in the recycling process.  The same is true of the oil.  It also can be recycled.  Oils that contain PCBs will be detoxified or incinerated.  All solid wastes are disposed of at an EPA approved TSCA waste facility.

All of the high level material is worked in the >500 shop.  The material will be broken down into smaller pieces, and cleaned in our degreasing process to prepare items for recycling and disposal.  Within the >500 shop, there are many departments that specialize in certain types of equipment.  For instance, we have the following departments and functions:

  • High Bay Area (teardown of large PCB units)
  • Degreaser (where all of the metals are decontaminated)
  • Pan A (contained area where the cores of large units are separated for cleaning)
  • Bag House Area (the vacuum system for the granulator)
  • Granulator Area (where copper and aluminum is granulated for cleaning)
  • Distillation Area (where all of the degreasing solvent is recaptured and distilled to be used again)
  • Pan B (contained area where the cores of small units are separated for cleaning)
  • In Process Storage Area (where items are stored for further modification before the cleaning process)
  • RCRA Storage Area (where wastes from the degreasing process are stored for incineration)
  • Basket Dump Area (metal are packaged here to await quality checks by the laboratory and the Quality Assurance Department)
  • Shipping Dock (for loading metals onto trucks for shipping)
  • Clean Metals Storage Area (staging area for clean metals)
  • Cable Room (special room for processing lead shielded cable)

All metals that have been washed in the degreaser are then tested and the samples are sent to the laboratory to assure that they are free of PCBs.  Following, the metals are sent to be recycled.  Oils from the process are sent to an incinerator.  All solid wastes are disposed of at an EPA approved TSCA waste facility.

After all of the material has been processed all of the accompanying information is entered into our database.  With the data that has been collect, we are now ready to supply our customers with all of the documentation that is required by the EPA.  This documentation will include copies of all signed original documentation (ex. manifest, addendum), all disposal documentation, and associated Certificates of Disposal (CD).

TCI of Alabama, LLC
101 Parkway East

Pell City, Alabama 35125
Phone (205) 338-9997
Fax (205) 338-9979

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