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HEALTH CONSULTATION

STAUFFER CHEMICAL COMPANY
TARPON SPRINGS, FLORIDA

 

DISCUSSION

On-site surface soil contained arsenic concentrations as high as 127 mg/kg. Short-term exposure to soil containing this concentration of arsenic would not pose a health hazard. However, chronic and frequent exposure to soil containing the maximal arsenic concentration could pose a public health hazard. The concentrations of the other inorganic and organic chemical contaminants in surface soil do not pose a public health hazard.

On-site surface soil also contained radium-226 at concentrations as high as 74 pCi/g. There are no regulatory standards that specifically apply to phosphate ore wastes. However, for uranium mill tailings, the EPA has promulgated a standard of 5 pCi/g for radium-226 in the top 15 centimeters of soil [3]. At the Stauffer site, the maximum radium concentrations in the slag processing and main production areas exceeded this value. In addition, on-site, gamma radiation readings (< 140 gR/hr) exceeded the EPA's standard of 20 pR/hr above background for inactive uranium processing sites [3].

The site is currently inactive, fenced, and patrolled by security guards. Therefore, public contact with on-site contamination is unlikely. However, if the site were to be reoccupied, long-term contact with the areas containing maximal concentrations of radionuclides could result in exposures in excess of acceptable health-based levels.

The concentrations of inorganic and radioactive chemicals in surface soil samples from the school property do not pose a public health hazard.

Water from on-site monitoring wells in the surficial aquifer contained chemical contaminants at concentrations above drinking water MCLS. However, the surficial aquifer is not being used as a potable water source in the area. The nearest public water supply wells (which are in the Floridan aquifer) are located about 1.5 miles southwest of the site on the opposite side of the Anclote River. There is no evidence of human exposure to contaminated groundwater from the surficial aquifer.

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