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HEALTH CONSULTATION

SMITH ROAD MUNICIPAL SOLID WASTE LANDFILL
HOMERVILLE, CLINCH COUNTY, GEORGIA


SITE CONDITIONS AND CONTAMINATION OVERVIEW

There have been two rounds of sampling done on the private wells in the area: one by EPD in 1994 and another by Moreland Altobelli Associates in 1998 (1, 2). No evidence was found that the wells had been contaminated by releases from the landfill on either occasion.

Groundwater modeling predicted a contaminant plume flow from west to east on site, then discharging to Woodyard Creek. According to the model, much of the plume should biodegrade before reaching the creek. Most of the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) should volatilize when discharged to the surface water. Also, according to the model, if contaminants were released off site, they should not move in the direction of the private wells south and southeast of the landfill (3).

Although very high levels of contamination were recorded in the groundwater samples on site, no data has been recorded to indicate that contaminants have migrated off site. Some off-site groundwater and surface water data taken by Mr. White from EPD showed the presence of low levels of metals, which are believed to be naturally occurring. However, none of the contaminants which were found on the site were present in the off-site groundwater samples taken by Mr. White (4).


PUBLIC HEALTH CONCERNS AND ISSUES

Approximately 27 residences with approximately 100 occupants are within a ¼ mile radius of the site. The distance from the border of the landfill to the nearest residence is about 200 feet. There is a high school within ½ mile of the site. All of the residences in the areas around the landfill use private wells for all water use, including drinking, cooking, bathing, feeding livestock, and irrigating land.

Mr. Strickland stated there had been no complaints of health problems or concerns relating to the landfill (5). EPD stated that the level of public health concern in the surrounding community at this time is low (6).


DISCUSSION

The most effective way to discuss the potential for exposure to environmental contaminants is to examine potential exposure pathways. Usually these pathways are evaluated in terms of on-site and off-site exposure. On-site exposure pathways are not discussed because there is no on-site activity by residents and/or workers and there have been no reports or evidence of trespassing. In terms of past and present exposures off site, there does not appear to be any pathway by which residents could have been exposed to contaminants originating from the landfill because there is no documented evidence that contaminant migration off the site has occurred.



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