CONTINENTAL STEEL CORP.
On this page:
- What Is Being Done to Clean Up the Site?
- What Is the Current Site Status?
- EPA’s Involvement at the Site
- Activity and Use Limitations
- Sampling and Monitoring
- Green Remediation
- Operable Units (opens new page)
- Cleanup Progress (opens new page)
The 183-acre Continental Steel Corp. Superfund site is located in Kokomo, Indiana. From 1914 to 1986, the Continental Steel Corp. facility produced nails, wire and wire fence from scrap steel on site. Manufacturing operations included the use, handling, storage and disposal of hazardous materials. Steel-making operations included reheating, casting, rolling, drawing, pickling, galvanizing, tinning and tempering. Facility operations resulted in contaminated soil, sediments, surface water and groundwater with volatile organic compounds (VOCs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and several metals, including lead. Sampling also detected lead contamination in some nearby residential soils. Cleanup finished in 2011. Groundwater treatment and monitoring is ongoing.
What Is Being Done to Clean Up the Site?
The site is being addressed through federal and state actions.
EPA has conducted several five-year reviews of the site’s remedy. These reviews ensure that the remedies put in place protect public health and the environment, and function as intended by site decision documents. The most recent review concluded that response actions at the site are in accordance with the remedy selected by EPA and that the remedy continues to be protective of human health and the environment in the short term. For the remedy to be protective in the long term, groundwater extraction and monitoring must continue. The fequired Institutional controls (ICs) are in place, and effective.
What Is the Current Site Status?
The site’s long-term remedy is in place.
In April 2009, EPA received almost $6 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding to finish cleanup of two areas: the former slag processing area and the site's contaminated groundwater. The funding helped accelerate the cleanup of hazardous waste on the site and created at least 45 temporary jobs. About 86,000 tons of slag were moved to the site's acid lagoon area for use as fill. The former slag processing area was then capped with two feet of clean soil. Groundwater work included extensive sampling to identify the contaminated plume area, installation of groundwater extraction and monitoring wells, and use of a soil vapor extraction system. Three wind turbines generate some of the power needed to operate the groundwater extraction system.
Other parts of the remedy included removal of underground storage tanks, associated wastes and buried asbestos-containing material, soil consolidation and covering, and sediment dewatering and dredging.
EPA’s Involvement at the Site
The Continental Steel Superfund site is located along West Markland Avenue in Kokomo, Indiana. It was operated by Continental Steel and its predecessors from approximately 1914 to 1986, when it ceased operations after filling for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The facility produced nails, wire, and wire fence from scrap metal. Operations included steel reheating, casting, rolling, drawing, pickling, galvanizing, tinning, and tempering. The site is located in a mixed residential, commercial, and industrial use area and is mainly zoned for general use. The closest residents are located within 100 feet east of the property fence line, along South Leeds Street.
The site is situated above three geologically significant aquifers. It encompasses approximately 183 acres and is divided into six operable units, consisting of an abandoned steel manufacturing facility (Main Plant), pickling liquor treatment lagoons (Acid Lagoon Area), a former waste disposal area (Markland Avenue Quarry), a former waste disposal and slag processing area (Slag Processing Area), on-site creeks, and groundwater.
Activity and Use Limitations
At this site, activity and use limitations that EPA calls institutional controls are in place. Institutional controls play an important role in site remedies because they reduce exposure to contamination by limiting land or resource use. They also guide human behavior. For instance, zoning restrictions prevent land uses – such as residential uses – that are not consistent with the level of cleanup.
For more background, see Institutional Controls.
Volatile organic compounds (VOCs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and metals associated with site activities were found (groundwater, soil, sludges and sediments) at the site.
Sampling and Monitoring
- Second Five Year Review(PDF) (173pp, 30.5MB) September 2007
- First Five Year Review (PDF) (116pp, 4.5MB) July 2002
- ESD (Explanation of Significant Differences) for OU 1 (PDF) (37pp, 1.9MB) September 2005
- Record of Decision (PDF) (186pp, 319K) September 1998
- Interim Record of Decision for OU 5 (PDF) (63pp, 113KB) August 1996
ARRA funded wind turbines produce electricity to offset the long-term costs of operating the groundwater extraction and treatment system.
During cleanup, a site can be divided into a number of distinct areas depending on its complexity. These areas, called operable units (OUs), may address geographic areas, specific problems, or areas where a specific action is required. Examples of typical operable units include construction of a groundwater pump and treatment system or construction of a cap over a landfill.