An automotive mechanic in Victoria caught with 26 disposable cylinders of R134a has been fined under the Ozone Protection and Synthetic Greenhouse Gas Management Regulations.
Disposable cylinders containing scheduled substances such as R134a are banned in Australia.
Inspectors from the Department of the Environment and Energy executed a search warrant on the Victorian workshop premises in April this year, when they identified and seized around $2500 worth of R134a that has since been forfeited to the Commonwealth for safe destruction.
Two infringement notices were served to the mechanic; one for possessing refrigerant without a permit and another for storing refrigerant in disposable cylinders. According to the Department, the mechanic has now paid the infringement notices and obtained appropriate permits.
Disposable cylinders are illegal because a residual ‘heel’ of refrigerant can remain in the containers and be released to atmosphere after it has been discarded.