TVA is having an analysis done on rust-colored material that accumulated in the parking lot of the Kingston Fossil Plant during a maintenance procedure Tuesday in which oil fires were being used to reduce rust buildup in four of the plant's nine boilers. An inspection of the plant grounds and off-site areas suggested the material was confined to the parking lot, according to TVA. Barbara Martocci, Tennessee Valley Authority spokeswoman, said the incident happened as TVA was conducting a procedure to minimize rust in the boilers, some of which have been idled during cleanup operations for the Dec. 22 coal fly ash spill. The procedure involved filling tubes in the boilers with water, using fuel oil fires to heat the water and draining the water out of the tubes. When an employee noticed rust-colored materials on cars in the plant parking lot at 3:15 p.m. Tuesday, the process was stopped. Martocci said TVA had alerted the community about the procedures beforehand and when the release occurred TVA reported it to the Roane County Community Advisory Group, a watchdog organization. TVA also notified the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, which serves as an advisory body to the state's Air Pollution Control Board. Randy Ellis, vice chair of the citizen's group, said he is waiting to see if verification comes from TDEC that the release was contained to TVA property. "This fallout may have been contained to the TVA property but who is to say it will be in the future?" he wrote on the www.roaneviews.com Web site. Ellis said he is concerned that in addition to the Dec. 22 ash spill there have been inadvertent releases of materials from smoke stacks at the Kingston plant on Sept. 10, Sept. 18 and on Tuesday. "People out there do not know what is going to hit them next," Ellis said. "It seems like it is one thing after another." The earlier releases appeared to involve flakes of sulphur-based materials that had formed inside a smokestack during test burns to see what grade of coal could be used with new scrubbers at the plant. The Sept. 10 release appeared to be confined to the plant's parking area, but the Sept. 18 release sent flakes raining down on the community. A TVA analysis of the materials concluded they were not harmful because particles were too large to be inhaled. The Tuesday incident did not involve tests, but was a maintenance procedure commonly done at fossil plants, Martocci said. It produces smoke, but she did not know if fallout generally results. It may be hard to compare Kingston with other plants because others generally aren't dealing with equipment that has been idled for months, she said. "Kingston is a different situation than most plants," Martocci said. "We are not using the units as much because of the spill and because demand has not been high enough." Business writer Ed Marcum may be reached at 865-342-6267.