TRIANGLE PACIFIC CORP IXL DIVISION
ELIZABETH CITY, NC
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The Triangle Pacific Corporation Site is located near Elizabeth City, North Carolina at 1268 Toxey Road, in Pasquatank County. The site comprises about 188 acres, purchased by Triangle Pacific Corporation from Westinghouse Electric Corp in 1977. Most of the site is owned by TCOM LP, which manufactures and tests aerostats. Aerostats include unpowered balloons and powered airships. A balloon may be free-flying or tethered.
The responsible parties entered an Administrative Order on Consent in March 2000. This is a Superfund Alternative Site, meaning it is not listed on the Superfund National Priorities List (NPL) but uses the same investiagtion and cleanup processes and standards as NPL sites.
What Has Been Done to Clean Up the Site?
The Triangle Pacific Corporation Site is located near Elizabeth City, N.C., at 1268 Toxey Road in Pasquatank County. The site comprises about 188 acres, purchased by Triangle Pacific Corporation from Westinghouse Electric Corp in 1977. The Site is part of the former 822-acre Weeksville Naval Air Station. Most of the site is owned by TCOM LP, which manufactures and tests aerostats.
The U.S. Government purchased the land in 1943; the Navy developed and operated the Site as a light aircraft or blimp base and continued its operations until 1960. In the late 1960s the parcel changed hands several times resulting in wood kitchen and bathroom cabinet manufacturers purchasing the property. From 1975 until 1996, the site was known to have generated two separate hazardous waste streams from the manufacturing of wooden cabinets. The waste streams were created from spent non-halogenated solvent-based toner, lacquer thinner and lacquer dust. The toner and lacquer thinner reportedly contained various chemicals, including methyl ethyl ketone, toluene, acetone and isobutanol, and the metals cadmium and arsenic.
To the south of the hangar, the Site is largely unused by TCOM and consists of open grassland, forest, and swamp, which have overgrown features formerly used by Triangle Pacific Corporation and the Navy. This includes a former blimp tethering area, as well as a closed landfill. Westinghouse and Triangle Pacific Corporation, reportedly, used this landfill from 1972 through 1979 for the disposal of wastes generated during the production of wood cabinets. A map obtained from the Navy in 1990, as well as the U.S. Geological Survey topographic map for the Site, labels the landfill area as “sewage disposal.” Historically, the landfill was mowed, but mowing has not been continued in recent years, and the area is overgrown with trees, shrubs and bunch grass.
Northwest of the landfill is an area that contains the former waste water treatment plant (WWTP) and incinerator used by the Navy. To the west of these structures are two earthen pits presumed to be associated with the former WWTP. The area surrounding these pits contains a variety of metal and concrete debris, and is the area from which the remnants from approximately 40 steel drums and surrounding soil were removed as part of the field investigation activities in 2011.
During the Remedial Investigation (RI) the above-mentioned areas were divided into several broad areas, based on use, to facilitate the EPA’s response actions to cleanup the various media contaminated by former operations. These areas include the storage tank area, the wooded area northwest of the landfill, the WWTP and incinerator, the on-site landfill, the coal storage area, the field north of the wooded area, the formerormer fuel island area, areas surrounding the blimp hangar, and Pailin Creek.
- Several investigations have been performed at the Site, beginning with the first phase of assessment performed in 1987, and culminating with the investigations conducted as part of the RI in 2011 and 2012.
- In November 1987 the Site was assigned a medium priority for assessment, and it was determined that a site inspection was needed to assess if the Site posed a threat to human health and the environment.
- In June 1990, a Phase I Screening Site Investigation (SSI) was completed - Two hazardous waste streams were identified from manufacturing operations (spent non‐halogenated solvent‐based toner and lacquer thinner, and lacquer dust). The investigation identified the presence of the on‐site landfill. The Phase I SSI also identified that the Site was located near wetlands, as well as the Pasquotank River and Newbegun Creek, and that groundwater in the region was used as a drinking water source. The Site was identified as representing potential risk to human health and the environment and was recommended for a high priority.
- In December 1990, the Phase II SSI was conducted - This investigation included a site inspection, interviews and environmental sampling. The site inspection and interviews provided more detail on operations at the Site and identified the presence of the storage tank area and boiler house. The analytical results for these samples indicated the presence of various contaminants in environmental media. Based on these results, an Expanded Site Investigation (ESI) was recommended.
- In September 1998, the ESI was conducted - Based on the findings of the previous investigations, and under the terms of an Administrative Order on Consent entered with the EPA, an ESI was conducted. Samples were collected from Site areas identified in prior screening investigations. NCDENR used the ESI data to generate a Hazard Ranking System score for the Site; based on this scoring, the EPA has not nominated this Site for inclusion on the NPL. This is a Superfund Alternative Site, meaning it is not listed on the Superfund NPL, but uses the same investigation and cleanup processes and standards as NPL sites.
- 2011 - 2012 Remedial Investigation - Field work activities included environmental sampling. Northwest of the landfill is an area that contains the former WWTP and incinerator used by the Navy. To the west of these structures are two earthen pits of uncertain usage, but presumably associated with the former WWTP. Approximately 40 steel drums and surrounding soil were removed as part of the field investigation activities in 2011.
What Is the Current Site Status?
The Site is currently zoned for industrial use, but only a portion of the 188 acres is actively used in manufacturing operations. Much of the Site is open land with low floral vegetation or woodlands. The adjacent waterfront property adjoining the Pasquotank River and Newbegun Creek (east of the Site) is occupied by single‐family residential dwellings on large lots. Land uses to the west, northwest, and north of the former Navy base are chiefly agricultural, including row crops, although a former agricultural area along the west bank of Pailin Creek has been developed for residential properties. The nearest residence is approximately 300-feet from the Site, across Pailin Creek to the west. The U.S. Coast Guard airfield and the Elizabeth City Municipal Airport are located approximately three-miles northwest of the Site.
EPA signed the Interim Record of Decision (IROD) on July 31, 2018. The selected cleanup plan includes excavation and disposal of contaminated soil and enhanced bioremediation and institutional controls for groundwater. This cleanup will prevent further contaminant migration through soil and treat contaminated groundwater. The estimated cost for the cleanup is $1,353,150.