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PUBLIC HEALTH ASSESSMENT Troy Mills Landfill
Troy, Cheshire County, New Hampshire

EPA ID No. GAD980559413
October 28, 2004

Prepared by:

Bureau of Environmental and Occupational Health
New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services
Under a Cooperative Agreement with
Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry




TABLE OF CONTENTS

Summary

Purpose

Background and Statement of Issues

Discussion

Health Outcome Data

Community Health Concerns

Children's Health Considerations

Conclusions

Recommendations

Public Health Action Plan

Preparers of Report

References

Appendices

Appendix A: Figures

Appendix B: Tables

Appendix C: ATSDR Plain Language Glossary of Environmental Health Terms

Appendix D: Description of Health Comparison Values

Appendix E: Educational Needs Assessment for the Troy Mills Landfill Site

Appendix F: ATSDR Public Health Hazard Categories

Appendix G: Written Comments on Public Comment Release


Summary


The Troy Mills Landfill (TML), also called the Rockwood Brook Landfill, is located in a mostly wooded, 270-acre property about 1.5 miles south from the town center of Troy, New Hampshire. The landfill owner, Troy Mills, Inc., is a local fabric manufacturer. The company used the 10-acre landfill from 1967 until 2001 as an industrial waste disposal area. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (DES) identified elevated levels of metals, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and semivolatile organic compounds (SVOCs) leaking from containerized waste at the landfill.

The National Priorities List
The National Priorities List (NPL) is a list maintained by the EPA of the most serious hazardous waste sites identified for possible long-term cleanup. The NPL is part of Superfund, which is a federal program created to clean up hazardous waste sites throughout the country. In 1992, Troy Mills completed a feasibility study detailing a proposed remedy that included capping the inactive disposal area and installing additional monitoring wells. If necessary, the company would also implement a groundwater recovery and treatment system. The company, in cooperation with the DES, then completed a detailed design study. The company filed for bankruptcy protection in 2001 and could not implement the remedial design previously approved by the DES in 2000. On September 26, 2003 the Troy Mills Landfill was added to the National Priorities List. Later that year, EPA began a removal action at the site to reduce the spread of contaminants from the landfill to a nearby wetlands area.

What kind of chemical contamination has been found on the site?

From 1967 to 1978, the company disposed an estimated 6,000-10,000 drums of liquid wastes and sludges containing Varsol, plasticizers, vinyl resins, pigments, and top-coating products over an approximately 2-acre area. After 1978, the remaining 8 acres were used to dispose of waste fabric scraps and other solid waste from the company's manufacturing complex.

Chemical wastes disposed at the site contain a large number of chemical constituents. These chemicals include di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, di-n-octyl phthalate, acetone, cis-1,2-dichloroethene, methyl ethyl ketone, methylene chloride, toluene, xylenes, and chromium. These chemicals have been detected in groundwater underlying the site. Of these chemicals, cis-1,2-dichloroethene and di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate have been detected in surface water near the site.

How might I be exposed to chemical contamination at the site?

Exposure Pathways
A description of the way that a chemical moves from its source (where it began) to where and how people can come into contact with (or get exposed to) the chemical.

ATSDR defines an exposure pathway as having five parts:
  • Source of contamination,
  • Environmental media and transport mechanism,
  • Point of exposure,
  • Route of exposure, and
  • Receptor population.
When all five parts of an exposure pathway are present, it is called a Completed Exposure Pathway. Each of these five terms is defined in the Glossary. Environmental investigations at the Troy Mills Landfill indicate that contaminated leachate from the drum disposal area has migrated to the nearby wetlands area through a culvert under the gravel access road. Individuals who may have accessed this area for recreational purposes could contact contaminated sediments or surface water in this area. Given the low contaminant levels and the low frequency of exposure, it is unlikely that individuals would experience any short-term or long-term health effects associated with these exposures.

The groundwater beneath the drum disposal area has been contaminated with a number of chemical substances associated with past waste disposal practices at the site. This groundwater is not being used as a source of water supply. Individuals are not being exposed to TML-related contaminants in groundwater.

Environmental samples that have been collected in Rockwood Brook downstream from the TML and in Sand Dam Pond do not indicate that these areas have been affected by releases from the TML. Individuals who swim, wade, or do other recreational activities in Sand Dam Pond are not being exposed to TML-related contaminants.

What health effects might result from exposure to chemical contamination at the site?

Adverse Health Effects
A change in the body function or the structures of cells that can lead to disease or health problems.
Area residents are only likely to have been exposed to chemical contamination associated with the TML if they came into contact with contaminated surface water and sediments in the wetlands area immediately adjacent to the site. Adverse health effects are not expected to result from these exposures given the low contaminant levels and the low frequency of exposure. Likewise, area residents who recreate in Sand Dam Pond are not at health risk because contamination related to the TML has not been found in this water body.

Could current or past exposures to chemical contamination at the site have caused an increased rate of cancer in the community?

No. Given the low levels of contaminants found and the limited opportunities for exposure at the site, exposure to potential cancer causing chemicals should not result in increased cancer rates in the community.

Is the site being cleaned up?

Yes. In late 2003, EPA began work to construct a temporary containment system at the site. EPA installed three separate interceptor trenches, each one totaling approximately 100 feet, to intercept groundwater contaminants seeping into nearby wetlands. Once the containment system is operational, DES will remove floating contamination for disposal at an off-site location. Now that the TML has been added to the National Priorities List (Superfund), it is eligible for clean up under the Superfund program. Individuals who are interested in this issue should contact the EPA Regional 1 office in Boston, Massachusetts, for additional information.

Where can I get more information?

Public Health Assessment
A report or document that evaluates chemical releases at a hazardous waste site and determines if people could be harmed from coming into contact with those chemicals. The PHA also identifies if further public health actions are needed. The text and appendices of the Public Health Assessment contain more information about the health issues discussed in this summary. To ask questions about this Public Health Assessment or to obtain extra copies of this document, please contact Dennis Pinski in the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services, Bureau of Environmental and Occupational Health at (603) 271-6909. You can also send an e-mail to the Bureau by visiting its website at: http://des.nh.gov/EOH.

Additional copies of this Public Health Assessment will be available at the Troy and Fitzwilliam Town Halls and Public Library in Troy, New Hampshire.

If you would like more information on the site cleanup efforts, please contact Tom Hatzopoulos, EPA's on-scene coordinator, at (617) 918-1284, or John Splendore, of DES, at (603) 271-5569.


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