Superfund Information Systems: Site Profile

Superfund Site:

FACET ENTERPRISES, INC.
ELMIRA, NY

Cleanup Activities

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Background

The Facet Enterprises, Inc. site is located in Elmira Heights, New York. Facet Enterprises (now called Purolator Facet, Inc.) made products such as bicycle parts, automobile engine components and small arms for the military at the site. Disposal of waste materials at the 31-acre area took place from the 1940s through 1978. Waste disposal led to soil and groundwater contamination. Following site investigations, soil contamination has been cleaned up. Groundwater treatment is ongoing. EPA is also continuing investigations of toxic vapors that may be entering homes and buildings from contaminated groundwater below the structures. EPA installs mitigation systems in the structures with elevated levels. Further cleanup strategies will be initiated as necessary.

From 1929 to 1976, the 39-acre Facet Enterprises, Inc. site was owned and operated by the Bendix Corporation, which manufactured various products including bicycle parts, automobile engine components, and small arms during World War II. In 1976, Facet Enterprises, Inc. was created to carry on the manufacturing of engine components. In 1990, Facet Enterprises, Inc. changed its name to the Purolator Products Company. Facet Enterprises however remains the site name. Disposal of waste materials on the plant property is known to have occurred since at least the 1940s through 1978. The site contains numerous disposal areas, including eight dump sites and two open sludge disposal areas. Wastes disposed of at the site include cyanide salts, heavy metal sludges, spent solvents, and various oils. In addition to the eight known disposal areas, the open, flat area to the northwest of Plant 2 has been used for material storage throughout the plant's operating history. On-site disposal of wastes was discontinued by Facet in 1978. The site is adjacent to a residential area and is less than 200 feet from the nearest home. The nearby wells, Sullivan Street public water supply wells, which supply drinking water for more than 10,000 people, were closed due to contamination by trichloroethylene (TCE). There are approximately 1,000 people living within a 1/4-mile radius of the site, and six schools are located within a mile of the site. Site Responsibility: This site is being addressed through Federal and potentially responsible parties' actions.

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What Has Been Done to Clean Up the Site?

On September 4, 1992, a Record of Decision (ROD) for the Site was issued for the excavation of soils and sediments and the treatment of contaminated groundwater. 23,541 tons of contaminated soils and sediments have been excavated and disposed of off-site during the construction completed in May 2000. Construction of the groundwater remediation system was completed in September 1997.

Following a hydrogeological investigation in 1983 that confirmed the site’s groundwater contamination, a remedial investigation in 1986 determined the extent of contamination and identified cleanup alternatives. EPA selected the remedy in the site’s September 1992 Record of Decision, or ROD. It included excavating, consolidating and capping contaminated soils and sediments on site, and use of wells to extract contaminated groundwater from the aquifer. A system to treat the extracted groundwater by air stripping was also put in place. Remedial construction finished in May 2000. In total, 23,541 tons of contaminated soils and sediments were dug up and disposed of off site.

Groundwater contamination is addressed at Facet and Sullivan Street Wellfield by using air strippers to remove the contaminants from groundwater. The groundwater pump and treat system located at the site was completed and has been operational since the fall of 1997.

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What Is the Current Site Status?

The site is being addressed in a single long-term remedial phase focused on cleanup of the entire site.

EPA is continuing investigations of toxic vapors that may be entering homes and buildings from contaminated groundwater below the structures and is installing mitigation systems in the structures with elevated levels. Further cleanup strategies will be initiated as necessary.

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