Written by Eric Holden Thursday, 24 February 2011 12:07
Representatives from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) held a public meeting at Farmingdale Village Hall on Thursday evening to field questions and concerns from residents regarding their No Further Action remedy proposal stemming for the Target Rock Corp. Superfund site.
Target Rock Corp., located at 1966 Broadhollow Road, has manufactured valves for nuclear power applications since 1981 and is still in operation. It is approximately 11 acres in size and bordered by residential neighborhoods on two sides. Over the last 25 years, the company has been identified sporadically as a source of soil and groundwater contamination, primarily from solvents used to degrease metal parts.
In 1984, Suffolk County Department of Health Services (SCDHS) cited the company for illegally discharging process wastewater into a drywell without a permit and improperly storing drums of hazardous chemicals. Later that year, a new drum storage area was built and the drywell was cleaned out. With Suffolk County cooperation, a permanent wastewater storage system was also constructed and the contaminated soils were removed.
Beginning in 1992, NYSDEC conducted a second phase of the investigation to assess the effectiveness of previous removal actions and identify additional sources of contamination. From their analysis, they found that an abandoned underground storage tank (UST) was leaking into the soil and groundwater. From 2003 to 2004, Target Rock Corp. went through a lengthy process of removing the tank and approximately 212 cubic yards of contaminated soil. The company privately funded the cleanup project, not by taxpayer dollars.
“The owner of Target Rock stepped forward and agreed to do the work under a consent order,” said NYSDEC Environmental Engineer John Swartwout, who began the meeting with an overview of the Superfund process. “This was a cooperative company that wanted to do the right thing by assisting in our efforts.”
The most recent investigation of the site indicates that the location no longer poses a significant threat to human health or the environment. The last round of testing was conducted in August of last year, and only one sample came up positive for excessive groundwater contamination. There were no detections of the contaminant solvents PCE, TCE and TCA in the indoor air samples and warranted no off-site action. The level of contamination found in the one sample that came back positive was extremely minimal and the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) determined that no additional active remediation was required.
NYSDEC Environmental Engineer Bob Corcoran made a presentation for the proposed action plan at the site. “We will monitor the soil vapor outside the building along the southern boundary adjacent to the residential properties near the site,” said Corcoran. Since some isolated, residual contamination still remains in the soil, soil vapor and groundwater, he suggested establishing an evaluation program to make sure contamination levels continue to decrease as expected. They also plan on the continued monitoring of sub-slab vapor and indoor air, as well as the periodic evaluation of groundwater.
“[Monitoring] will start out annually,” said Swartwout. “However, it could become once every two or three years depending on the results.”
NYSDOH Public Health Specialist Renata Ockerby, who agreed with NYSDEC’s evaluation of the site and determined the proposed remedy to be protective of public health, also gave a presentation.
Overall, residents in attendance seemed to be pleased with the “No Further Action” remedy proposal.
“We would really appreciate the continued monitoring of the site,” said Farmingdale resident Karen Williams, who lives less than a mile from the Target Rock location. “I hope that everyone involved keeps the lines of communication open.”