(credit: CBS 11 News)

(credit: CBS 11 News)

MILTON, Ga. (CBSDFW.COM/AP) — Battery-maker Exide Technologies, who has pledged to clean up a former battery recycling plant in Frisco, is seeking Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection as it attempts to restructure its U.S. business.

The Milton, Ga., company says it plans to continue to operate globally during its reorganization.

The Frisco plant, which sits in a highly populated area of the city, was closed last November. The Environmental Protection Agency report completed in January shows hazardous waste, including lead, has been found in the soil on-site.

“I would personally like to see all of the landfills dug up and all of the hazardous waste removed,” said Frisco resident Collette McCadden.

Exide has stated that it is committed to treat or remove as much waste as possible as well as addressing the concerns of residents.

The company says a highly leveraged balance sheet has limited its ability to invest in its businesses, and unprecedented increases in product costs have hurt its balance sheet. Those increases have been driven mainly by the North American market price for scrap lead.

Exide’s voluntary petition for Chapter 11 protection filed in Delaware prevents debt collectors from collecting amounts owed by the company. Exide says it has negotiated $500 million in financing that will help cover operating expenses after the filing.

Exide Technologies makes batteries for vehicles and also provides stored electrical energy services for industrial applications.

(©2013 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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