MINEOLA/NORTH HEMPSTEAD, NY
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The Jackson Steel site is an inactive "roll form metal shapes" manufacturing facility in Mineola and North Hempstead, New York. Jackson Steel operated at the site from 1970 to 1991. The site is bordered to the north by commercial and single-family dwellings, to the east by a two-story apartment complex, to the south by a daycare center, and to the west by an office building and restaurant. Facility operations contaminated soil and groundwater with hazardous chemicals, including tetrachloroethylene (PCE), trichloroethylene (TCE) and 1,1,1-trichloroethane (TCA). Following cleanup efforts to protect human health and the environment, the site’s long-term remedy is in place. Currently, there are no exposure pathways that could result in unacceptable risks. None is expected as long as the site use does not change and vapor mitigation systems continue to be properly operated, monitored and maintained.
Degreasers, including PCE, TCE and 1,1,1-TCA, were used until March 1985. Sludges from degreasing equipment were stored in drums. The Nassau County Department of Health noted improper spill control at the waste storage area during a facility inspection.
Following immediate actions to protect human health and the environment, and additional site investigations, EPA placed the site on the Superfund program’s National Priorities List (NPL) in February 2000.
What Has Been Done to Clean Up the Site?
Immediate Actions: In October 2001, the Nassau County Department of Health (NCHD) performed air sampling inside the daycare center’s building because of its proximity to the site. The air samples detected PCE at levels below the New York State Department of Health’s (NYSDOH’s) guideline for indoor PCE exposure. Given the sensitivity of the population exposed (preschool children), NCHD collected additional samples in December 2001. At that time, testing was also conducted inside the Jackson Steel building and at the restaurant located adjacent to the site. The results indicated that PCE levels in the indoor air of several rooms in the daycare center were above NYSDOH’s guideline for PCE. As a result, in January 2002, a subslab depressurization system (i.e., a vapor intrusion mitigation system) was installed at the daycare center by EPA. In addition, a ventilation system was installed by the daycare center’s contractor. Samples collected to assess the effectiveness of the implemented measures showed that the PCE levels in the air were significantly below NYSDOH’s guideline and below EPA’s acceptable noncancer risk levels. Because elevated PCE levels were also detected in a billiards club that shared common walls with the site building and the daycare center, EPA installed a vapor intrusion mitigation system under the concrete slab of this building, as well. The billiards club was subsequently occupied as a retail store and recently the daycare center expanded to occupy this space, as well. The vapor intrusion mitigation systems were replaced by the property owner’s contractor in May 2016.
Entire Site: Following a remedial investigation and feasibility study to determine the nature and extent of site contamination and to evaluate remedial alternatives, EPA selected a remedy in a September 2004 Record of Decision (ROD). The remedy included in-situ soil vapor extraction (ISVE) to remove volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from subsurface soils and in-place chemical (ISCO) treatment of contaminated groundwater in the upper aquifer. In addition, contaminated surface soils and materials in dry wells and sumps inside and outside the Jackson Steel building were to be dug up and disposed of off-site. The floor of the Jackson Steel building was to be decontaminated. If a groundwater investigation determined that the site is the source of the contamination in the lower aquifer, the remedy would also include extraction and treatment of the contaminated lower aquifer.
The design for the building decontamination were completed by EPA's contractor, CH2MHill, in October 2005. The building decontamination was performed by Environmental Waste Minimization, Inc. (EWMI). Office equipment and construction material were removed from the interior of the Jackson Steel building in October 2005. The cleanup of the building floor was performed in January 2006. Broom sweeping and pressure washing was used to remove residual waste. Once the initial cleaning was complete, the building floor was decontaminated using a floor scrubber. All rinse water was collected using shop vacuums and stored in 55-gallon drums. Solid debris was also stored in separate 55-gallon drums. In total, 10 drums of rinse water waste and 18 drums of solid waste were transported to a nonhazardous waste facility for disposal.
The design for the soil excavation were completed in October 2005. The excavation and disposal of the contaminated surface soil, contaminated material in the building sumps and trench, and contaminated material in the dry wells was performed from October 2005 to February 2006. C&Z Construction, Inc. performed the excavation of the surface soil along the eastern boundary of the site. EWMI performed the excavation and removal of soil from all other areas and the removal and disposal of the contaminated materials from the sumps and the trench inside the building, and from the dry wells. A total of 170 cubic yards of material was excavated and disposed of at an EPA-approved off-site facility.
The analytical results from post-excavation soil samples collected from the excavation limits indicated that the residual levels of VOCs were below the ROD soil cleanup objectives.
The ISVE system was installed and operated from 2005 until 2008, when, based on the results of the soil gas sampling, it was determined that the operation of the ISVE system had met the ROD soil cleanup objectives.
Although the soil cleanup objectives were met, because vapors continued to be recovered, it was decided that the ISVE system would continue to operate until the vapors were reduced to levels that achieved the remedial action objective of minimizing or eliminating migration to indoor air. EPA continued to operate the ISVE system until June 2013, when the levels of vapor removal were determined to be too low for the system to continue to be effective. The ISVE system, which operated for a total of 55,871 hours, removed an estimated 83 pounds of VOCs from the subsurface. The ISVE system was decommissioned in April 2016.
The design specifications for the ISCO system were completed in June 2005. Between July and December 2005, approximately 15,000 gallons of iron-catalyzed sodium persulfate (with small amounts of buffering agents) and 600 gallons of hydrogen peroxide were injected in the upper aquifer through a network of 20 injection wells. Upon review of the post-chemical oxidation injection data, it was determined that the concentrations of several contaminants had slightly rebounded after a significant initial drop. As a polishing step, air oxidation was implemented in order to further reduce the VOC concentrations. The design specifications for the air oxidation system were developed in May 2006 by CH2MHill. The air injection system operated from June 7 to 26, 2006 and August 18 to September 15, 2006.
A supplemental groundwater investigation from March 2005 to September 2006 sought to determine the source of the lower aquifer contamination underneath the site property and to establish any relationship between the contamination at the site and the VOC contamination in nearby municipal water supply wells (before treatment). Findings indicated the site is not currently a significant source of the contamination in the lower aquifer. Based on this information, EPA determined that the extraction and treatment of contaminated groundwater in the lower aquifer would not be appropriate. EPA documented these findings in an August 2007 Explanation of Significant Differences (ESD).
After issuance of the ROD, the vacated neighboring buildings where vapor intrusion concerns had previously been identified were re-occupied by a daycare center and a retail store. At present, both buildings are occupied by the daycare center. The vapor intrusion mitigation systems that were installed by EPA operated until May 2016, when the systems were replaced with new systems by the property owner’s contractor.
Annual subslab and indoor air testing indicates that while vapors are still present beneath the daycare center and Jackson Steel buildings, the indoor air in the daycare center is in the acceptable range (the indoor air is not sampled at the Jackson Steel building as it is not occupied and many of the building’s windows are not intact). EPA determined that various ongoing/future vapor-intrusion mitigation actions are needed to prevent current (in the case of the occupied building) and potential future (in the case of the Jackson Steel property) exposures to VOCs inside the occupied building, and that these actions will be needed until the subslab vapor levels finally dissipate. EPA also determined that notices needed to be placed on the deeds of the two properties to prevent exposure through vapor intrusion. A June 2016 ESD documented these determinations. Notices were placed on the deeds of the two properties in July 2016.
Five-year reviews ensure that the remedies put in place protect public health and the environment, and function as intended by site decision documents. Five-year reviews ensure that the remedies put in place protect public health and the environment, and function as intended by site decision documents. EPA conducted the first five-year review at the site in August 2012. The second five-year review was completed in May 2017. The latest review concluded that the remedy continues to be protective of human health and the environment.
The next five-year review will be conducted by May 2022.
What Is the Current Site Status?
The site was addressed in two stages: immediate actions and long-term remedial phases focused on identification and remediation of the source of contamination.
EPA is currently pursuing the deletion of the site from the NPL.