Superfund Information Systems: Site Profile

Superfund Site:

ROCKAWAY BOROUGH WELL FIELD
ROCKAWAY TOWNSHIP, NJ

Cleanup Activities

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Background

The Rockaway Borough Wellfield site is located in Rockaway Borough, New Jersey. The site covers a two-square-mile area and includes three municipal water supply wells, which are located in a glacial aquifer designated by EPA as the sole source aquifer for Rockaway Borough and surrounding communities. Groundwater is contaminated primarily with tetrachloroethene (PCE) and trichloroethene (TCE). The suspected sources of the contamination included industrial operations in Rockaway Borough, including the Klockner and Klockner (K&K) facility, and a dry cleaning operation (Lusardi's Cleaners, Inc.). Following initial actions to protect human health and the environment, the site’s long-term cleanup is ongoing. Remedial actions include the extraction and treatment of contaminated groundwater and the identification and removal of contaminant sources.

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What Has Been Done to Clean Up the Site?

Initial Actions: In 1981, an emergency was declared due to the groundwater contamination, and the residents supplied by the distribution system were advised not to use their tap water for drinking and cooking. The National Guard trucked in temporary drinking water supplies. In 1981, the borough installed an activated carbon water treatment system to reduce contaminant concentrations. Rockaway borough has since upgraded its existing treatment system with the installation of an air stripper to ensure compliance with Safe Drinking Water Act standards.

Groundwater: The September 1986 Record of Decision, or ROD, called for continuation of the existing wellhead treatment system and further study to identify sources and delineate the full extent of contamination. A supplemental study identified two separate plumes of groundwater contamination now known as the “Klockner and Klockner” and “East Main Street/Wall Street” plumes.

The site’s September 1991 ROD selected a remedial action that entails extracting and treating contaminated groundwater to restore the aquifer. The remedy included: (1) installation of extraction wells; (2) treatment of extracted groundwater by chemical precipitation and air stripping; (3) reinjection of treated groundwater; and (4) appropriate environmental monitoring to ensure the effectiveness of the remedy. The Klockner and Klockner (K&K) groundwater treatment system started operating in January 2006. The East Main Street/Wall Street (EM/WS) groundwater treatment system started operating in 2011.

Source Control: Additional investigations to further delineate contamination within the immediate source areas were necessary. The East Main Street/Wall Street Area and the Klockner and Klockner Property are the two areas identified as sources of the groundwater contamination.

EPA selected the remedy for theEM/WSArea in the site’s September 2006 ROD. It called for excavation of contaminated soil and off-site disposal or treatment, with potential use of a soil Vapor Extraction (SVE) system. The SVE system has been operating since February 2010. 
 

EPA selected the remedy for the K&K area in  the site’s September 2007 ROD. It called for excavation of contaminated soil and off-site disposal or treatment, with potential use of a soil Vapor Extraction (SVE) system. The SVE system has been operating since July 2013.
 

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What Is the Current Site Status?

The installation of a water treatment system by the Borough has significantly reduced the threat of exposure to contaminants in drinking water while activities leading to the final cleanup take place.

The site is being addressed in three stages: initial actions and two long-term remedial actions focused on cleanup of groundwater and the sources of the contamination.

The Klockner and Klockner groundwater treatment system started operating in January 2006. The East Main Street/Wall Street groundwater treatment system started operating in 2011.

The construction of the fund-lead soil vapor extraction system (SVE) was completed in February 2010 and the SVE is operational and is expected to operate for about eight years.  EPA selected the remedy for the Klockner and Klockner Property in the site’s September 2007 ROD. It called for soil vapor extraction of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) beneath Building 12, excavation and off-site disposal or treatment of about 150 cubic yards of VOC-contaminated soil near Building 13, and excavation of about 27 cubic yards of lead-contaminated soil near Building 12. Construction of the SVE system, excavation of VOC-contaminated soil and excavation of lead-contaminated soil was completed in June 2013.  The SVE became operational in July 2013 and is expected to operate for fiveyears.
 

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