Superfund Site Data & Photos
Below are links to the photographs used to demonstrate the current status of the contaminants on the site and the planning construction in 2009. To my knowledge, these photographs are not available at any other location on the Internet. Just click to view or download the photographs (they are large, so please be patient).
Please contact me at any time with your questions, and I will relay the questions to the EPA and provide you with whatever answers are received.
Below is the status of the Superfund site, as outlined on the EPA website as of April 22, 2009 (reprinted verbatim):
Current Site Status
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is cleaning up contamination at the Havertown PCP site. The groundwater treatment plant has been operating full-time since August 2001. The temporary treatment system was removed from the site after it was determined that the permanent facility was treating the groundwater as designed. The oil/water separator has been removed and the yards behind the Philadelphia Gum Company have been restored.
A final investigation and feasibility study was conducted for the site to investigate the deep groundwater and the soils and sediments of Naylors Run. During this Remedial Investigation, contamination was identified in an area behind Naylors Run that is zoned as Residential Open Space (ROS) by the Township. An abandoned sewer line was found to be transporting contaminated groundwater to this area. The sewer line was cleaned and sealed to eliminate the transport of contamination. In the summer of 2005, EPA surveyed the land to determine property lines along Naylors Run, sampled soil and groundwater to map the contamination to characterize the extent of the contamination. The further study of the ROS area was added to the scope of the Remedial Investigation.
In August 2005, EPA completed its third Five-Year Review of the site. The review looked at the work that has already been completed at the site and determined that EPA's cleanup decisions to date continue to be protective in the short-term. There is no current exposure to the site soils or groundwater.
In April 2006, EPA finished construction of two additional groundwater extraction wells. The new wells extract contaminated groundwater from the deeper aquifer and transport the water to the treatment system. These wells are capturing the deep contamination which has resulted in an increase in the mass of contaminants going to the treatment facility.
The Remedial Investigation of the deep groundwater, soils and sediments of Naylors Run and the ROS area was finalized in March 2007 and the Feasibility Study was finalized in August 2007. EPA issued the Proposed Plan for the Site in August 2007. The Public Comment period was from August 22, 2007 through October 21, 2007. The Record of Decision for the deep groundwater, soils and sediments of Naylors Run and the ROS area was signed on April 16, 2008. The remedial design for OU3 has been initiated and the treatment facility has been upgraded to treat approximately 70 gallons of water per minute.
From 1947 to 1991, National Wood Preservers ran a wood treatment operation on this site in Delaware County, Pennsylvania. The company reportedly disposed liquid wastes into a well leading to the groundwater under the plant. These wastes were primarily oil contaminated with pentachlorophenol (PCP). The liquid wastes leached into nearby Naylor's Run, a small stream that flows through a residential area and eventually into the Delaware River. Liquid wastes were also spilled on the surface, contaminating the soil in the area. There are no known users of groundwater within a one-mile radius of the site. Approximately 26,000 people live within a mile of the site.
Cleanup of this site is the responsibility of Federal and State governments, and parties potentially responsible for site contamination.
NPL Listing History
Our country’s most serious uncontrolled or abandoned hazardous waste sites can be cleaned using federal money. To be eligible for federal cleanup money, a site must be put on the National Priorities List (NPL). This site was proposed to the National Priorities List on December 30, 1982. The site was formally added to the list on September 8, 1983, making it eligible for federal cleanup funds.
Threats and Contaminants
The groundwater, surface water, and soil were contaminated with PCP, arsenic, dioxins, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and petroleum hydrocarbons. The surface water has improved, and will continue to improve once the current project is completed. Nearby residents are connected to the public water supply, so nobody is drinking contaminated water. Although unlikely, people who accidentally ingest or come in direct contact with contaminated groundwater may be at risk.
Contaminant descriptions and associated risk factors are available at: This link on the EPA website does not work, but if you click here you will reach the latest ATSDR web page.
In 1976, EPA performed multiple remedial actions to contain the contamination. Since the owners of the site were uncooperative with EPA in addressing the contamination, the site was listed on the National Priorities List (NPL) for federal cleanup.
In 1987, EPA put up a fence to restrict access to the site, and installed sponge-like barriers plus a catch basin in Naylor's Run to contain the chemicals. In 1991, EPA installed an oil/water separator at the point where the contaminated groundwater discharged to Naylor’s Run. In 1993, EPA removed tanks and drums from the facility and secured the buildings. About 97,000 tons of liquids, 55 gallons of solids, and 60 tons of sludges – all containing hazardous wastes -- were disposed of off site. Thirty tanks were cleaned, cut up, and recycled. This work was completed in April 1994. EPA also demolished the wood treatment building, removed an underground storage tank, and removed all the demolition debris from the site.
In 1996, EPA demolished the vacant Lobb Lumber Building, located on an adjoining, contaminated property. That year, EPA also installed a three-acre synthetic cap over the areas of soil contamination at the site. This cap eliminated the threat of exposure to the contaminated soils. The cap is designed to allow construction of a light industrial building on it, in keeping with the current zoning of the area.
The groundwater treatment plant has been operating full-time since August 2001 and has been successful in removing the contamination from the shallow groundwater.
In May 2003, EPA learned of an abandoned sewer line that originated in the contaminated groundwater and travels to the Residential Open Space Area located behind Rittenhouse Circle. The sewer line was investigated, cleaned and properly sealed. This action, completed in May 2004, stopped the flow of contamination from the site to the Residential Open Space Area through the sewer line. In the summer of 2005, EPA surveyed the land around the area to determine property lines along Naylors Run, sampled the soil and groundwater to map the contamination, and is currently characterizing the extent of the contamination. This information will be added to the Remedial Investigation Report being drafted for the deep groundwater and soils and sediments of Naylors Run.
In August 2005, EPA completed its third Five-Year Review of the site. The review looked at the work that has been completed at the site and determined that EPA's cleanup decisions to date continue to be protective in the short-term. There is no current exposure to the site soils or groundwater.
In April 2006, EPA added two additional extraction wells to the existing groundwater extraction and treatment facility. The new extraction wells capture water from the deeper aquifer, which has resulted in an increase in the mass of contamination going to the treatment facility for processing. EPA continues to look for ways to optimize the on-going remedy. EPA has redesigning the pre-treatment portion of the groundwater extraction facility to increase the amount of water that can be treated by the facility. The facility can now treat 70 gallons per minute of contaminated groundwater.
The Remedial Investigation of the deep groundwater, soils and sediments of Naylors Run and the ROS area was finalized in March 2007 and the Feasibility Study was finalized in August 2007. EPA issued the Proposed Plan for the Site in August 2007. The Public Comment period was from August 22, 2007 through October 21, 2007. The Record of Decision for the deep groundwater, soils and sediments of Naylors Run and the ROS area was signed on April 16, 2008. The remedial design for OU3 has been initiated.