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HEALTH CONSULTATION

Perchlorate Contamination in the Citizens Utilities'
Suburban and Security Park Water Service Areas

AEROJET-GENERAL CORPORATION
RANCHO CORDOVA, SACRAMENTO COUNTY, CALIFORNIA


CONCLUSION

Based upon the information reviewed, there was a completed exposure pathway to perchlorate-contaminated water in the Citizens Utility Suburban System. This completed exposure pathway occurred when water was delivered from the Mather Main Base Water System, which is known to be contaminated with perchlorate, to the Suburban System for several months in 1995 and 1996. Otherwise, the water that supplies the Suburban System customers comes from wells that have not had any quantifiable levels of perchlorate detected in them. Thus, most Suburban System customers have never been exposed to any perchlorate-contaminated water.

Residents who lived near and employees who worked at businesses near the Mather Main Base intertie may have been exposed on a regular basis to the perchlorate when they drank water and washed or showered with the water. Other exposures occurred over a short duration resulting in a very low dose to the customers and visitors who occasionally frequented the business establishments located near the Mather Main Base intertie.

It is difficult to predict when the perchlorate first contaminated the Mather Main Base wells but it may have been as early as 1987. In March 1997, the perchlorate concentration in two Mather Main Base drinking water wells (Main Base wells #1 and 2) exceeded a concentration (4 to 18 ppb) suggested by the USEPA provisional reference dose based on a 70 kg individual consuming two liters of water a day. There is currently a three hundred to thousand-fold uncertainty factor incorporated into the provisional reference dose. Since the uncertainty factors are supposed to account for the somewhat limited toxicological information, it is conceivable that as more toxicological data becomes available, a change in the (provisional) reference dose may occur.

The estimated dose for a adult resident or worker (only when well #2 was the lead well) of the Suburban System who was exposed to water from the intertie with the Mather Main Base exceeds the provisional reference dose range which means that noncancer (thyroid depression) health effects may have occurred when the adult resident or worker was exposed to water from these wells. However, because there is a very large uncertainty factor associated with the provisional reference dose and the estimated doses do not approach the NOAEL, it is unlikely that these exposures did cause any noncancer health effects. This intertie is no longer being used, thus any noncancer health effects that may have occurred should no longer be occurring now that the exposure has ceased.

The estimated dose for a frequent adult customer/visitor or worker (when well #1 was the lead or there was a four well rotation) to a business served by the Suburban System and who was exposed to water the intertie with the Mather Main Base does not exceed the provisional reference dose range. This means that noncancer (thyroid depression) health effects would not have occurred to the frequent adult customer/visitor drinking or washing with water from the Mather intertie.

Based upon the information available at the time this health consultation was written, CDHS concludes that well water received through the intertie with the Main Base Water System for several months in 1995 and 1996 posed a health hazard when the water was delivered to the Suburban System. Since the water from this intertie is longer being used, there is no current health hazard from perchlorate to Suburban System users. Additionally, the well water in the Security Park System does not pose a health hazard due to perchlorate.


PUBLIC HEALTH RECOMMENDATIONS AND ACTIONS

The Public Health Recommendations and Actions Plan (PHRAP) for this site contains a description of actions taken, to be taken, or under consideration by ATSDR and CDHS at and near the site. The purpose of the PHRAP is to ensure that this health consultation not only identifies public health hazards, but also provides a plan of action designed to mitigate and prevent adverse human health effects resulting from exposure to hazardous substances in the environment. The CDHS and ATSDR will follow-up on this plan to ensure that actions are carried out.

Actions Completed

  1. Citizens Utility sent a notice to their Suburban System customers in March about the finding of no quantifiable levels of perchlorate in the Suburban wells.
  2. CDHS prepared a fact sheet about perchlorate and health. CDHS made this fact sheet available to the affected water purveyors including Citizens Utility Company of California.

Actions Planned:

  1. The Air Force and the Perchlorate Study Group (a number of manufacturers and users of perchlorate) are sponsoring an investigation into fate and transport question regarding perchlorate. For instance, they will investigate if is perchlorate taken up and bioconcentrated by vegetable crops and the skin permeability of perchlorate.
  2. The Air Force and the Perchlorate Study Group are sponsoring a series of animal studies to address some of the information lacking in understanding perchlorate toxicology. CDHS cooperative agreement staff along with other state and federal scientists, were asked by the Air Force to recommend and oversee the planning of the animal studies. As of August 1997, the study protocols have been finalized and the process of choosing a laboratory to conduct the studies is underway. A report on the studies is expected in mid-summer 1998.

Recommendations for Further Action:

  1. Continue communicating with the Citizens Utility Suburban Systems water customers about the perchlorate issue.
  2. Continue monitoring drinking water wells for perchlorate, and discontinue using a well that has levels of 18 ppb or greater of perchlorate.
  3. Consider conducting a dose reconstruction exposure investigation of perchlorate exposure in the Suburban System.
  4. If indicated based on new toxicological information, review toxicological evaluation of past perchlorate exposures in the Suburban System.
  5. Be prepared to address the possible contamination of the Security Park System.

REFERENCES

  1. U.S. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, Division of Health Assessment and Consultation. Preliminary Health Assessment of the Aerojet-General Corporation, Rancho Cordova, CA. December 5, 1988.

  2. Environmental Health Investigations Branch California Department of Health Services. Site Review and Update of the Aerojet-General Corporation, Rancho Cordova, CA. Prepared for U.S. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. March 19, 1993.

  3. Environmental Health Investigations Branch California Department of Health Services. Health Consultation- Trichloroethylene Levels in Private Wells near the Aerojet-General Corporation, Rancho Cordova, CA. Prepared for U.S. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. July 1996.

  4. Environmental Health Investigations Branch California Department of Health Services. Health Consultation- Hazel Avenue Ponds near the Aerojet-General Corporation, Rancho Cordova, CA. Prepared for U.S. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. November 18, 1996.

  5. Environmental Health Investigations Branch California Department of Health Services. Health Consultation- Review of Methods of Analysis for the Perchlorate Anion, Aerojet-General Corporation, Rancho Cordova, CA. Prepared for U.S. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. March 18, 1997.

  6. Environmental Health Investigations Branch California Department of Health Services. Health Consultation- American River Study Area of the Aerojet-General Corporation, Ranch Cordova, CA. Prepared for U.S. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. February 21, 1996.

  7. California Department of Health Services, Drinking Water Field Operations Branch in Sacramento. SDWA Compliance Review Report of Citizens Utilities Company of California's Suburban Water System. April 1997.

  8. California Department of Health Services, Drinking Water Field Operations Branch in Sacramento. Annual Inspection Report of Citizens Utilities Company of California's Security Park Water System. November 1995.

  9. California Department of Health Services, Drinking Water Field Operations Branch in Sacramento. Annual Inspection Report of the Mather Air Force Base Main Base and Mather Air Force Base Wherry Housing Water Systems. August 15, 1995.

  10. Department of the Air Force, Air Force Base Conversion Agency. Mather Air Force Base Annual Water Quality Report. May 30, 1996.

  11. Senior Water Resource Control Engineer, California Regional Water Quality Control Board, Central Valley Region. Memorandum to Aerojet file, concerning Meeting on Perchlorate Sampling on 2-11-97. February 11, 1997.

  12. Associate Director, National Center for Environmental Assessment, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Letter with attached report written to the Chairman of the Perchlorate Study Group, concerning Review of Proposed RfD for Perchlorate. October 23, 1995.

  13. California Department of Health Services, Drinking Water Field Operations Branch, Sacramento. Perchlorate Monitoring Data: 3/11/97 through 6/23/97. July 25, 1997.

  14. California Department of Health Services, Sanitation and Radiation Laboratories Branch. Analytical Report for Inorganic Results- July Sampling. August 13, 1997.

  15. California Department of Health Services, Sanitation and Radiation Laboratories Branch. Analytical Report for Inorganic Results- August Sampling. September 9, 1997.

  16. Environmental Health Investigations Branch California Department of Health Services. Perchlorate in Drinking Water, a fact sheet. May 1997.

  17. ATSDR. Public Health Assessment Guidance Manual. Lewis: Boca Raton, 1993.

  18. Y. Toyoshima and T.E. Thompson. 1975. Chloride flux in bilayer membranes: chloride permeability in aqueous dispersions of single walled vesicles. Biochemistry. 14: 1525-1531.

  19. Toxicology Excellence for Risk Assessment. Proposed Perchlorate Reference Dose (RfD), Peer Review Draft. Prepared for The Perchlorate Study Group. February 1997.

  20. J.M.C. Connell. 1981. Long-Term Use of Potassium Perchlorate. Postgraduate Medical Journal. 57: 516-517.

  21. K.W. Wenzel and J.R. Lente. 1984. Similar effects of thioamide drugs and perchlorate on thyroid-stimulating immunoglobulins in Graves' Disease: Evidence against an immunosuppressive action of thioamide drugs. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 58: 62-69.

  22. D. Barzilai and M. Sheinfeld. 1966. Fatal complications following use of potassium perchlorate in thyrotoxicosis: report of two cases and a review of the literature. Isr J Med Sci. 2: 453.

  23. E. Martino, F. Aghini-Lombardi, S. Mariotti, M. Lenziardi, L. Baschieri, L.E. Braverman and A Pinchera. 1986. Treatment of amiodarone associated thyrotoxicosis by simultaneous administration of potassium perchlorate and methimazole. J Endocrinol Invest. 9: 201-207.

  24. E. Martino, S. Mariotti, F. Aghini-Lomardi, M. Lenziardi, S. Morabito, L. Baschieri, A Pinchera, L. Braverman and M. Safran. 1986. Short term administration of potassium perchlorate restores euthyroidism in amiodarone iodine-induced hypothyroidism. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 63: 1233-1236.

  25. E.W.C.M. van Dam, M.F. Prummel, W.M. Wiersinga and R.E. Nikkels. 1993. Treatment of amiodarone-induced hypothyroidism with potassium perchlorate. Neth J Med. 42: 21-24.

  26. L.J.M. Reichert and H.A.M. De Rooy. 1989. Treatment of amiodarone induced hyperthyroidism with potassium perchlorate and methimazole during amiodarone treatment. Brit Med J. 298: 1547-1548.

  27. M.D. Trip, D.R. Duren and W.M. Wiersinga. 1994. Two cases of amiodarone-induced thyrotoxicosis successfully treated with a short course of antithyroid drugs while amiodarone was continued. Br Heart J. 72: 266-268.

  28. Associate Director, Environmental Criteria and Assessment Office, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Memorandum to Toxicologist , U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region IX, concerning Provisional Non-cancer and Cancer Toxicity Values for Potassium Perchlorate (CASRN 7778-74-7)(Aerojet General Corp./CA). December 2, 1992.

  29. S.C. Werner. 1967. Hyperthyroidism in the pregnant woman and neonate: two discussions on hyperthyroidism. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 27: 1637-1654.

  30. A.R. Frisk and E. Josesson. 1947. Thiouracil derivatives and pregnancy. Acta Med Scand (Suppl). 196: 85-91.

  31. K. Sato, H. Mimura, S. Kato, O. Isozaki, T. Tsushima and K. Shizume. 1983. Serum propylthiouracil concentration in patients with Graves' disease with various clinical courses. Acta Endocrinol (Copenh). 104: 189-194.

  32. S. Retetoff, Y. Ochi, H.A. Selenkow and R.L. Rosenfeld. 1974. Neonatal hypothyroidism and goiter in one infant of each of two sets of twins due to maternal therapy with antithyroid drugs. J Pediatr. 85:

  33. G.N. Burrow. 1965. Neonatal goiter after maternal propylthiouracil therapy. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 25: 4039-4040.

  34. J.G. Thorpe-Beeston and K.H. Nicolaides. Maternal and Fetal Thyroid Function in Pregnancy. The Parthenon Publishing Group: New York, 1996.

  35. S. Postel. 1957. Placental transfer of perchlorate and triiodothryronine in the guinea pig. Endocrinol. 60: 53-66.

  36. K Brown-Grant and M.R. Sherwood. 1971. Viability of the rat blastocyst following the oral administration of potassium perchlorate or potassium iodide to the mother. J Reprod Fert. 27: 265-267.

  37. J.B Stanbury and J.B. Wyndaarden. 1952. Effect of Perchlorate on the Human Thyroid Gland. Metabolism. 1: 533-539.

  38. M. Karstadt and J.K. Haseman. 1997. Effect of discounting certain tumor types/sites on evaluations of carcinogenicity in laboratory animals. American Journal of Industrial Medicine. 31: 485-494.

  39. C. C. Capen. 1994. Mechanisms of chemical injury of thyroid gland. Prog Clin Biol Res. 387: 173-191.

  40. H Schaefer and T.E. Redelmeier. Skin Barrier: Principles of Percutaneous Absorption. Karger: Basel, 1996.

PREPARERS OF REPORT

ENVIRONMENTAL AND HEALTH EFFECTS ASSESSORS:

Marilyn C. Underwood, Ph.D.
Staff Toxicologist
Environmental Health Investigation Branch
California Department of Health Services

COMMUNITY RELATIONS COORDINATOR:

Jane Riggan, M.S.W.
Public Health Social Work Consultant II
Environmental Health Investigations Branch
California Department of Health Services

ATSDR REGIONAL REPRESENTATIVE

William Nelson
Senior Regional Representative
Office of Regional Operations, ATSDR - Region IX

ATSDR TECHNICAL PROJECT OFFICER:

William Greim, M.S., M.P.H.
Division of Health Assessment and Consultation
Superfund Site Assessment Branch, State Programs Section


CERTIFICATION

The Perchlorate Contamination in the Citizens Utilities' Suburban and Security Park Water Service Areas, Aerojet-General Corporation Health Consultation was prepared by the California Department of Health Services under a cooperative agreement with the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR). It is in accordance with approved methodology and procedures existing at the time the health consultation was initiated.

William Greim
Technical Project Officer, SPS, SSAB, DHAC

The Division of Health Assessment and Consultation, ATSDR, has reviewed this health consultation and concurs with its findings.

Richard Gillig
Chief, SPS, SSAB, DHAC, ATSDR

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