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EPA Seeks Public Comment on Deletion of Superfund Site in Farmingdale from National Priorities List; No Threat Due to Previous Cleanup Work

Release Date: 08/15/2001
Contact Information:
(#01100) NEW YORK, N.Y. -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is asking the public to comment on its proposal to delete the Tronic Plating Superfund site in Farmingdale from the National Priorities List (NPL) of hazardous waste sites, because a cleanup has eliminated the sources of contamination at the site; it no longer poses a threat to public health or the environment. Sites deleted from the NPL remain eligible for cleanups in the unlikely event that a change in site conditions would warrant such action.

The site is in a mixed industrial/commercial area and was an electroplating and metal anodizing facility from 1968 to 1984. The owner of the property paid for the cleanup of the site, which was performed with EPA oversight under the terms of a Superfund enforcement order.

During its operation, the facility discharged industrial wastes into a sanitary pit and the four underground leaching pools on the site. The storm drains were also allegedly utilized by Tronic Plating to dispose of potentially hazardous liquid wastes. The building space, where Tronic formerly operated, is now occupied by three small companies and is owned by Commerce Holding, Inc.

The investigations of the site between 1987 and 1992 revealed that ground water, soils and storm drain sediments were contaminated with volatile organic compounds and metals. EPA conducted a risk assessment in 1992, which concluded that the risk at the site was acceptable. However, EPA identified several areas (three on-site storm drains, a sanitary leaching pool and a drywell) that were potential sources for metal contamination of the ground water.

In May 1993, Commerce Holding, Inc. entered into a Superfund Administrative Order with EPA to voluntarily remove the contaminated sediment and soil from each of the three on-site storm drains, the three adjoining overflow drains, the sanitary leaching pool and the drywell. The Order specified cleanup goals developed by EPA and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) that had to be met.

In compliance with the Order, Commerce Holding, Inc. conducted the cleanup in the summer of 1993. Storm water was removed from the on-site storm drains and sanitary leaching pool. A vacuum truck ("super-sucker") was used to remove contaminated sediments and soils from the storm drains, sanitary leaching pool and the drywell. An X-ray fluorescence (XRF) field-screening device was employed to determine the appropriate depth of the excavation. The XRF results indicated that the cleanup goals had been met and laboratory analysis of soil samples confirmed that conclusion. To verify the effectiveness of the cleanup, the NYSDEC continued to monitor the ground water at the site until 1997 when it was deleted from the New York State Registry of Inactive Hazardous Waste Sites.

The public comment period on EPA's proposed decision to delete the site began yesterday and will extend to September 13, 2001. Written comments should be sent to Gloria M. Sosa, USEPA, 290 Broadway, 20th floor, New York, New York 10007-1866. Comments can also be faxed to Ms. Sosa at (212) 637-4284. In addition, oral comments will be accepted through September 13, 2001 and should be directed to Ms. Sosa at (212) 637- 4283. Detailed information about the site can be reviewed at the Farmingdale Public Library at 274 Main Street.

If EPA does not receive any significant dissenting comments and/or significant new information during the public comment period, the site will be deleted from the NPL, effective within 60 days of today.