Skip directly to search Skip directly to A to Z list Skip directly to site content

PUBLIC HEALTH ASSESSMENT

TUTU WELLFIELD
ST. THOMAS, ST. THOMAS COUNTY, VIRGIN ISLANDS



APPENDICES


Appendix 1 - Figures 1, 2, and 3


Appendix 1, Figure 1 - Site Location
Map for the Tutu Wellfield National
Priorities List Site, St. Thomas,
U.S. Virgin Islands.


Appendix 1, Figure 2 - Location Map
of Various Properties at the Tutu
Wellfield National Priorities List Site,
St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands.


Appendix 1, Figure 3 - Location Map
of the Various Water Supply Wells
at and near the Tutu Wellfield National
Priorities List Site, St. Thomas,
U.S. Virgin Islands.


Appendix 2 - Response to Public Comments

Appendix 2 - Response to Comments Received during the Public Comment Period for the Tutu Wellfield Public Health Assessment

The Tutu Wellfield Public Health Assessment was available for public review and commentfrom January 29 through February 28, 1996. The Public Comment Period was announced in TheDaily News (St. Thomas), the St. Croix Avis, and The Tradewinds newspapers. Copies of thePublic Health Assessment were made available for review at the Curriculum Center, 44-46Konges Gade, St. Thomas. In addition, the Public Health Assessment was sent to 14 persons ororganizations.

During the Public Comment Period, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry(ATSDR) received comments from two civic organizations, one consulting firm, and one lawfirm. Comments and ATSDR responses are summarized below. The comment letters can berequested from ATSDR through the Freedom of Information Act.

Comment:The draft report erroneously refers to Texaco Caribbean Inc. as TexacoCaribbean, Inc.

Response:The Tutu Public Health Assessment has been changed so to identify TexacoCaribbean Inc. correctly.

Comment:The draft report does not make use of available data from the RI/FS regardingsources of soil and groundwater contamination. Instead it appears to rely uponfrequently misleading field screening results or data that have been supersededby more recently-acquired analytical data.

Response:The Tutu Wellfield Public Health Assessment has been modified to moreaccurately describe the sources of contamination at this site.

ATSDR agrees that field GC analyses should not be used in risk assessments. However, tetrachloroethene was detected in the Tillet and Harvey well at 2,040and 2,000 ppb, respectively, using appropriate laboratory based analysis. Therefore, the very high tetrachloroethene readings (thousands of ppb) obtainedby the field GC analyses are likely to represent actual conditions. ATSDR haschanged Tables 3 through 6 to indicate that the very high tetrachloroethene andother volatile organic compound field GC analyses readings as being greaterthan 1,000 ppb. This change does not have any impact on ATSDR's conclusionsconcerning the public health threat of the Tutu Wellfield NPL site.

It is important to realize that ATSDR evaluates not only current and futureexposures but also past exposures to hazardous substances associated with sitesproposed to the National Priorities List. Therefore, ATSDR uses data that mayreflect the actual exposures that may or did occur. It is ATSDR's opinion thatwhen the Tillet and other high volume wells were shut down the groundwaterflow pattern and thereby the chemical migration pattern was changed. Webelieve that the analytical results of samples taken from the Tillet well duringthe summer of 1987 more accurate reflect what people were exposed to in thepast. ATSDR used the data contained in the Phase I and II RemedialInvestigation to evaluate the current and future public health concerns.

Comment:The draft report's reliance, on pages four through six and eleven through twelve,of preliminary description of potential sources and descriptions of early soil gassurvey screening data (virtually all circa 1989 or earlier) is curious at best giventhe wealth of analytical data now available for virtually all of the sites that arediscussed. Further, the designation in the site description section of some PRPsas "sources" of contaminants and other as "suspected sources" is especiallysuspect and dated given the fact that the Curriculum Center is identified as a"suspected source" (page 5), when available evidence indicates that it is arguablythe primary source of contaminants to the aquifer.

Response:The Tutu Wellfield Public Health Assessment description of sources has beenmodified to more accurately reflect the sources of the contamination at this site.

Comment:Another problem with the approach taken by the draft report is that it makes noattempt to discern between the relative significance of sources and contaminants. The report seems to suggest that all contaminants are equally bad and pervasiveand that all health issues related to the Tutu aquifer. The site is on the NationalPriorities List, will be expensive and difficult to remediate, and poses publichealth issues because the aquifer is contaminated with chlorinated VOCs fromtwo primary sources, the Laga and O'Henry facilities. BTEX plumes cover amuch smaller area, can be remediated, and pose significantly smaller publichealth issues. While it is certainly not ATSDR's; role to attempt to determine orassign culpability amongst the PRPs, it is ATSDR's responsibility to provideperspective about the sources and significance of public health issues relating tothe site.

Response:As is pointed out in this comment, ATSDR is not responsible for determining orstating which source contributed what proportion of contamination in each well. ATSDR has modified the Background section of the Tutu Wellfield PublicHealth Assessment so that it gives a better description of the sources ofcontamination. But the Public Health Assessment will not indicate which sourcecontributed contamination to the various wells. ATSDR will only evaluate thepublic health issues associated with the contamination in the various wells.

Comment:In addition to the generic issues about site descriptions and data described in theprevious comments, we have serious concerns about the inaccuracy of theinformation about the Tutu Texaco service station on page 4 of the draftdocument. Based on the results of the RI/FS, contrary to implications in thedraft report, there is no evidence that the Tutu Texaco service station contributedto groundwater contamination through the oil/water separator, catch basins,drum storage area, collection pits/traps, floor drains, or any wast oil spill. Further, statements in the draft report that "soil on the property was observed tobe saturated with waste oil or petroleum products" is unsubstantiated. There areno confirmed laboratory sampling analyses or documented field instrumentationlogs supporting this statement.

Response:These discussions have been removed from the Tutu Wellfield Public HealthAssessment.

Comment:The conclusions reached in the draft report are overly sweeping and are notsupported by the risk assessment methodology used or by normal standards forcharacterizing risk conclusions.

Response:The Tutu Wellfield Public Health Assessment was developed in accordance withthe ATSDR Public Health Assessment Guidance Manual, 1992. ATSDR hasadded more information to the exposure pathways section to better describe ourunderstanding of the exposures and possible public health implicationsassociated with site-related contaminants.

Comment:On page 34, the draft report states that there may be a "moderate" cancer risk formain plume commercial wells due to benzene, TCE and PCE. Besides notindicating how this conclusion was arrived at, it is not reflected in Table 11,which purports to compare the exposure doses to health guidelines for thesesame wells.

Response:The Tutu Wellfield Public Health Assessment was modified to clarify this issue.

Comment:The draft report, on page 34, makes the unreferenced and unqualified statementthat "benzene, PCE, and TCE have each been reported to increase the number ofcases of leukemia in families ingesting contaminated groundwater." Thisstatement should be deleted, particularly for benzene, as there are no validscientific data supporting it. According to ATSDR's Toxicological Profile forBenzene (PB93-182384), "no studies were located regarding cancer effects inhumans after oral exposure to benzene." The ATSDR Toxicological Profile forTCE (PB93-182533) summarizes some studies (particularly regarding Woburn,Massachusetts) supporting an association between consuming drinking watercontaining chlorinated solvents and leukemia, which may be what the presentdraft is referring to. However, in this same Toxicological Profile, ATSDR statesthat a linkage between trichloroethylene and leukemia is "controversial."

Response:The Tutu Wellfield Public Health Assessment was modified to clarify this issue. However, ATSDR disagrees with the statement that benzene has not beenassociated with cancer because of oral exposure. In ATSDR's latestToxicological Profile for Benzene (August 1995), it states that it is reasonable toassume that benzene could cause cancer in humans if ingested in sufficientquantities. Also it is important to remember that the people who obtained waterfrom the Tillet well did not only ingest contaminated water but also inhaled thecontaminates that volatilized out of the water (e.g., benzene). Benzene has beenassociated with leukemia when people were exposed via inhalation. ATSDR'slatest Toxicological Profile for TCE states that there is not sufficient evidence tounequivocally predict whether cancer would be of concern for people exposed toTCE at waste sites. The Tutu Wellfield Public Health Assessment has beenmodified to reflect this statement.

Comment:Page nine of the draft report states that "approximately 11,000 people in theTutu are not served by WAPA" and cites a 1989 NUS Preliminary AssessmentReport. We believe that further inquires by ATSDR would show that thisinformation and other presumptions about water use patterns are outdated andthat WAPA potable water service is now far more available in Tutu than isindicated by the draft report.

Response:ATSDR agrees that presently WAPA potable water service is far more availablein the Tutu area. However, in the past, WAPA service was not as available orused. The Tutu Wellfield Public Health Assessment has been modified toclarify this issue.

Comment:The basis for the draft report's apparent conclusion (at least as reflected in thelocal St. Thomas media) that contaminated groundwater has been ingested foralmost 20 years and that 11,000 people were likely exposed to a heightenedcancer risk is unclear.

Response:The Tutu Public Health Assessment has been modified to clarify this issue.

Comment:The draft report should but does not, clarify which wells are or were used fordrinking water and reflect completed exposure pathways, and whether the datacited reflect actual drinking water. For example, it should be stated if themonitoring well data in Table 2 are not drinking water or if the exposedpopulation estimates are based on data other than that from drinking water wells.

Response:The Tutu Public health Assessment has been modified to clarify this issue. Monitoring well data was not used by ATSDR to determine human exposuredoses.

Comment:The draft report overstates health concerns for benzene. Aside for monitoringwells and the closed Tillet well, the remaining benzene maximum levels are nearor below the Federal benzene MCL of 5 ppb. EPA's risk assessment for this siteattributed most of the upper-bound risk from groundwater to TCE and PCE. Benzene risks were found to be within the acceptable range.

Response:ATSDR evaluates not only the current and future public health implications ofsite but also past exposures and the associated public health implications. Waterfrom the Tillet well was provided to people throughout the island. This well hasbeen shown to be contaminated with benzene as high as 6,000 ppb. Therefore,we do not believe that the report has overstated the health concerns for benzene.

Comment:The draft report makes erroneous statements concerning MTBE. MTBE hasundergone extensive toxicological testing. Much of this information has beenpublished or submitted to the EPA.

Response:Additional information concerning MTBE has been added to the Tutu WellfieldPublic Health Assessment.

Comment:ATSDR's unqualified recommendation that contaminated water not be pumpedor used in the future is inconsistent with EPA's recommended remediationstrategies.

Response:The EPA's proposed groundwater remediation plan requires thedecommissioning of existing domestic and commercial wells within the confinesof the groundwater plume. Therefore, ATSDR's recommendation is notinconsistent with EPA's plan.

Comment:The basis for Recommendation 2 (page 42) is unclear. The report shouldprovide further elaboration regarding the basis for this recommendation.

Response:The basis for this recommendation is on page 37 of the Public Comment ReleaseTutu Wellfield Public Health Assessment.

Comment:The implication in the Waste Material Pathway section on page 31 that waste oilis a "hazardous waste" is likely incorrect under the Resource Conservation andRecovery Act. Consistent reference to the material as "waste oil" would be moreaccurate.

Response:The Tutu Wellfield Public Health Assessment has been modified accordingly.

Comment:The Public Health Assessment ignores general water quality chemistry dataobtained from Tutu-area supply wells, implying that degradation of groundwaterquality, and all potential health risks, are solely attributable to releases fromcommercial/industrial practices.

Response:This Public Health Assessment was prepared by ATSDR pursuant to theComprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act(CERCLA or Superfund) section 104 (i)(6) (42 U.S.C. 9604 [i][6], and inaccordance with our implementing regulations (42 C.F.R. Part 90). The law andregulations dictate that ATSDR evaluate the health impact of any site proposedfor inclusion on the National Priorities List. Therefore, this Public HealthAssessment discussed the degradation of groundwater associated with the TutuWellfield NPL site and the possible public health implications associated withthe groundwater degradation associated with the Tutu Wellfield NPL site.

Comment:Data presented in Table 2 are referenced as being collected during the period"September and June 1994". We are unaware of any sampling activitiesconducted in September 1994. More importantly, all environmental datapresented in Table 2 are inconsistent with results presented in the RemedialInvestigation and Feasibility Study.

Response:The title for Table 2 has been changed to indicate that the data was collectedfrom October 1992 through June 1994. This time period corresponds to theRemedial Investigation Phase I and II. Most of the data presented in Table 2was reported in Technical Memorandum II, February 1993. ATSDR hasreviewed groundwater monitoring data reported for both of the RemedialInvestigation phases. The following changes have been made to Table 2: Total1,2-dichloroethene was increased from 1,000 parts per billion (ppb) to 2,000(Phase II Remedial Investigation report, April 1995); 1,1,2-Trichloroethane wasremoved from the table; and Vinyl Chloride was increased from 17 to 1,300 ppb(Phase II Remedial Investigation report, April 1995)

Comment:Table 3 through Table 6 contain results from Roy F. Weston Field GasChromatograph (GC) analyses, conducted in 1987-1988. These data aresubsequently used to evaluate risks and potential health threats. This type ofdata, according to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) guidance, doesnot satisfy requirements necessary for use in Risk Assessment, and therefore,should not be used in the Public Health Assessment. Removal of these datawould in most cases result in lower "maximum" concentrations, and may havean impact on derived risks at the Tutu Wellfield site.

Response:ATSDR agrees that field GC analyses should not be used in risk assessments. However, tetrachloroethene was detected in the Tillet and Harvey well at 2,040and 2,000 ppb, respectively, using appropriate laboratory based analysis. Therefore, the very high tetrachloroethene readings (thousands of ppb) obtainedby the field GC analyses are likely to represent actual conditions. ATSDR haschanged Tables 3 through 6 to indicate that the very high tetrachloroethene andother volatile organic compound field GC analyses readings as being greaterthan 1,000 ppb. This change does not have any impact on ATSDR's conclusionsconcerning the public health threat of the Tutu Wellfield NPL site.

Comment:Data presented in Tables 4, 5, and 6 in numerous instances are not consistentand can not be supported by analytical results presented in the RemedialInvestigation and Feasibility Study.

Response:The data presented in Tables 4 through 6 was not restricted to just the RemedialInvestigation. When the problem in the Tutu area first came to the attention ofEPA, many of the wells were sampled and sample analysis was conducted in alaboratory (not field screening procedures). Therefore, this information wasincluded in the tables because they represent the human exposure conditionsbefore the Tillet was shut down. When the Tillet well was shut down, thegroundwater and chemical migration patterns probably changed.

Comment:Why were values which were qualified with a "B" included in Tables 7b and 7c? The "B" qualifier, inconsistent with you definition on page 16, indicates that theanalyte was detected in a Quality Assurance blank at a similar concentrations.

Response:These values have been removed from the Tables 7b and 7c.

Comment:Page 1, paragraph 4 and page 41, item #1: The basis for ATSDR's statement thatpeople have ingested contaminated groundwater for almost 20 years is notsupported by empirical data.

Response:The basis for ATSDR's statement has been included in the exposure pathwaysection of the Tutu Wellfield Public Health Assessment.

Comment:Page 3, "Site Description and History", first paragraph: ATSDR makes referenceto unknown sources of contamination within the Tutu Wellfield site. Whatinformation is ATSDR utilizing to drive this conclusion?

Response:This statement has been removed from the Tutu Wellfield Public HealthAssessment.

Comment:Page 4, "Esso Tutu Service Station", first paragraph: ATSDR states that a wasteoil UST and floor drains at the Esso Tutu station have impacted groundwaterquality. What empirical data and/or supporting statements in the RemedialInvestigation or Feasibility Study allow ATSDR to formulate this conclusion?

Response:This statement has been removed from the Tutu Wellfield Public HealthAssessment.

Comment:Page 4, "Esso Tutu Service Station", second paragraph: ATSDR references thecollection of samples from the oil/water separator. It is unclear why thissampling event is mentioned, it has no direct bearing on empirical groundwaterquality data at the site. Mention of these data and sampling activities areprejudicial unless such activities are discussed in a consistent manner.

Response:This paragraph has been removed from the Tutu Wellfield Public HealthAssessment.

Comment:Page 5, "Site Description and History": Reference is made to the RodriquezAuto Parts facility as being identified as a Potentially Responsible Party (PRP). It has been determined that this site is not a PRP with respect to the TutuWellfield Site.

Response:The discussion concerning the Rodriquez Auto Parts facility has been removedfrom the Tutu Wellfield Public Health Assessment.

Comment:Page 7, paragraph 2: The text reads that "the Western Auto Store ... was found to... contamination possibly associated with its operations." This statement shouldbe reworded to indicate that empirical data at Western Auto demonstrated arelease of petroleum product from the on-site underground storage tanks.

Response:The text has been changed to indicate that the Western Auto Store did contributeto groundwater contamination at the Tutu Wellfield NPL site.

Comment:Page 12, paragraph 4: The notation referring to reference 27 is not correct. Allreferences should be checked and verified.

Response:The cited reference has been corrected and all of the other references have beenchecked.

Comment:The relevance of the statement, "All possible sources of soil gas contaminationwere not ascertained" is uncertain when taken out of context. Soil vapor data areLevel 1 and are of no utility in a Public Health Assessment.

Response:The statement has been removed from the Tutu Wellfield Public HealthAssessment (page 12, paragraph 4).

ATSDR does not agree with this statement concerning the use of soil vapor data. Soil vapor data can be used to determine if there is a potential for humanexposures to soil gas. ATSDR has found that soil gases have, at some sites,migrated into homes in significant amounts that pose a public health hazard. Therefore, a discussion of the available soil vapor data is appropriate. ATSDRhas identified soil gas migration as a potential human exposure pathway at theTutu Wellfield NPL site. ATSDR does agree that the soil vapor data collected atthis site is not accurate enough to use in a risk assessment process. Therefore,ATSDR does not make any health statements concerning the potential humanexposure to soil vapors.

Comment:Page 12, paragraph 4: The subjective statement, "A mound ofhydrocarbon-contaminated soil was removed" should be modified so that thevolume of soil removed is quantified. A similar statement reflecting a "mound"of contaminated soil appears on page 13, and should likewise be quantified.

Response:For the purpose of health discussions, the amount of contaminated soil removeddoes not make any difference. Therefore, ATSDR does not feel thatquantification is needed.

Comment:Page 15, paragraph 4: Quarterly sampling of wells in the Tutu Wellfield site arenot presently being conducted by the Tutu Environmental InvestigationCommittee (TEIC). The most recent comprehensive groundwater samplingevent was completed in June-August 1994 during implementation of the Phase IIRemedial Investigation.

Response:The Tutu Wellfield Public Health Assessment has been modified to reflect thisfact.

Comment:Page 16, "Groundwater Monitoring Wells", paragraph 2: Dates of operation forall PRPs, including the Curriculum Center and O'Henry Dry Cleaners, should beprovided. Dates of operation can be used to help establish a time line withrespect to the presence/absence of contamination in site wells. Therefore, it ispossible to a certain degree to determine when various wells becamecontaminated.

Response:The dates of operation for all PRPs has been added to the "Background" sectionof the Tutu Wellfield Public Health Assessment. This information is then usedin the "Completed Exposure Pathways" section to develop a worse-case lengthof exposure estimate.

Comment:Page 16, last paragraph: ATSDR states, "Floating product and sheens wereobserved in monitoring wells at the Esso Tutu and Texaco Tutu ServiceStations. This would tend to confirm that LNAPLs are present and wouldincrease the change that DNAPLs maybe present in the groundwater." Thisverbiage should be modified. There is no technical justification for associatingthe presence of floating product with occurrence of DNAPLs. There are no datato support a conclusion that DNAPLs are present beneath the Esso and Texacoservice stations.

Response:The verbiage has been modified.

Comment:Page 27, Section f: the discussion of metal in groundwater does not includeinformation/quantification of background levels. Quantification of backgroundlevels is significant with respect to assessing water quality and potential healthconcerns.

Response:A discussion concerning background levels of metal in groundwater is presentedin the "Environmental Contamination and Other Hazard" section (subsection f). Page 27 discussions the health implications of the levels found in wells(naturally occurring or otherwise).

Comment:The use of Level II field screening GC data in summary tables has, more likelythan not, lead to erroneous conclusion regarding the existence of 1% solubilityconcentrations, and therefore the implied presence of DNAPLs in wells.

Response:As discussed above, some of the wells samples taken in 1987 were analyzed in alaboratory. That data would be Level IV and can be used to make variouspredictions. In addition, the Phase II Remedial Investigation Report concludedthat there is a possibility of DNAPLs under the LAGA and O'Henry DryCleaners properties. EPA has, also, indicated that they believe that DNAPLsmaybe under these two locations.

Comment:Discussions pertaining to the presence and potential concerns regarding volatileorganic compounds in commercial wells, institutional wells and private wellsneed to be assessed in light of prior comments regarding inaccuracies in datasummary tables.

Response:As discussed above, the changes in the summary tables do not change ATSDR'sdetermination that the Tutu Wellfield NPL site poses a public health hazard forpast, present, and future ingestion of contaminated groundwater. In addition, theRisk Assessment developed by EPA and ATSDR's Public Health Assessmentare in agreement that the contaminants associated with this site pose a cancerrisk to the public.

Comment:Page 28 and Page 34: It should be noted, as stated in the Feasibility Study, thatas part of the proposed Remedial Action no potable or non-potable extraction ofgroundwater will be permitted in the Tutu Wellfield site. This will effectivelyeliminate the "only completed exposure pathway".

Response:ATSDR agrees that if the proposed Remedial Action is undertaken and no wellswill be permitted to extract groundwater, except those associated with theRemedial Action, that would eliminate the "only completed exposure pathway." However, implementation of the Remedial Action is several years in the future. Therefore, the potential for future exposures is still a possibility at this time. Inaddition, the proposed Remedial Action can not do anything about the exposuresthat occurred in the past or that are currently happening. ATSDR will add adescription of the proposed Remedial Action to the Tutu Wellfield Public HealthAssessment and will also indicate that, if implemented, the proposed RemedialAction should eliminate any future human exposures to groundwatercontamination.

Comment:It is our opinion that the estimated number of 11,000 persons exposed over thepast 20 years through drinking the contaminated well water, dermal and othermeans of exposure, is far too low. The report acknowledges that the Tutu wellshave been used for commercial purposes - water hauled to private homes,schools, restaurants, hotels, supermarkets - all over the island.

Response:The Tutu Wellfield Public Health Assessment has been modified to clarify whythe estimated number of exposed persons is 11,000.

For people who did not reside in the Turpentine Run Basin area or the easternportion of the island, and relied upon roof-top catchments and cisterns for theirwater supply; it is unlikely that they were exposed to significant amounts orsite-related contaminants. They would not have obtained a significant amount oftheir water from the Tutu Wellfield NPL site. They may have periodically (oneore twice a year) received a truck load of water from the Tutu Wellfield NPL sitewhen the water in their cistern became low due to the lack of rain. Even at themaximum levels of contamination reported, it is doubtful that people wouldhave been exposed to enough of the site-related contaminants over a sufficientamount of time (i.e., continuously over many years) from one or two truck loadsto exceed comparison levels. In addition, some of the contaminants would havevolatilized out of the water before it was consumed as the water was pumpedinto the cistern and while the water sat in the cistern, further reducing thepossible exposure these people may have received.

Comment:Throughout the report, the statement is made that no health concerns wereexpressed by members of the public. This determination of lack of concernappears to have been based solely on the fact that only one individual attendedtwo informal "public availability sessions" held by the visitation team onDecember 11 and 12, 1992. How were these meetings publicized? Was thelocal media informed, not just of the meetings but the reasons for them?

Response:A public notice was published in the legal section of The Daily News, the St.Croix Avis, and The Tradewinds newspapers. In addition, the pastor of theLutheran Church of the Reformation announced that the sessions would be heldat the church during services several weeks prior to the sessions.

A press release was issued to the local news media prior to ATSDR's visit. Therelease not only announced that the availability sessions would be held but alsowhy they were being conducted.

EPA has, over several years, held meetings concerning the Tutu Wellfield NPLsite. Typically, these meeting have been very poorly attended. It wasn't until theMarch 5, 1996, EPA Public Meeting that a significant number of residentsattended. ATSDR attended that meeting and was available to talk to thecommunity during and after the meeting.

Comment:We are petitioning ATSDR to conduct a thorough epidemiological survey.

Response:ATSDR is not recommending that a health study be conducted at this sitebecause it would be very difficult to identify a large enough exposed population. No records are available to determine who received the contaminated water. Inaddition, the population within the Turpentine Run Basin and the eastern portionof the island (the areas most likely to have received a significant amount ofcontaminated water) are fairly transient. This means that those people probablydid not receive contaminated water for a significant amount of time (greater than10 years) which is thought to be needed in order to increase the chance of gettingcancer.

ATSDR is conducting various health studies (e.g., the ATSDR TrichloroetheneExposure Registry and the ATSDR Benzene Exposure Registry) at other siteswhere it is known how long people were exposed to similar concentrations ofcontaminants. These studies do not have the design flaws that a study conductedat the Tutu Wellfield NPL site would have. Hopefully these studies will helpATSDR and the scientific community better understand what the true cancerrisks related to these contaminants are.

Comment:We are petitioning ATSDR to hold information public meetings on the island ofSt. Thomas.

Response:ATSDR attended the March 5, 1996, public meeting sponsored by the U.S.Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). During that meeting, ATSDRresponded to the one question that was asked about ATSDR and its PublicHealth Assessment. That concern has been added to the Tutu Wellfield PublicHealth Assessment and has been addressed within the Public HealthAssessment.

ATSDR was available to talk to the public after the March 5 meeting. No onecame to any of the ATSDR representatives after the meeting to discuss anyhealth concerns or the Tutu Public Health Assessment. At this time ATSDRdoes not plan to hold any additional meetings regarding the Tutu Wellfield NPLsite.

Comment:On page 9 of this report, it is noted that "two informal, one-on-one publicavailability sessions were held to learn about citizens' site-related concerns." Itis further noted that only one individual attended the sessions. However, thereport does not indicate how the public was notified of these sessions.

Response:A public notice was published in the legal section of The Daily News, the St.Croix Avis, and The Tradewinds newspapers. In addition, the pastor of theLutheran Church of the Reformation announced that the sessions would be heldat the church during services several weeks prior to the sessions.

Comment:Because of the poor attendance level at the 1992 availability sessions, werecommend that ATSDR make another effort to notify the public and holdpublic meetings to not only address the community's concerns, but to also helpeducate the public of the findings in this report.

Response:ATSDR attended the March 5, 1996, public meeting sponsored by the U.S.Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). During that meeting, ATSDRresponded to the one question that was asked about ATSDR and its PublicHealth Assessment. ATSDR was available to talk to the public after thismeeting. No one came to any of the ATSDR representatives after the meeting todiscuss any health concerns or the Tutu Public Health Assessment. At this timeATSDR does not plan to hold any additional meetings regarding the TutuWellfield NPL site.

Comment:Page 42 of this report, section B, number 1 recommends community healtheducation "to assist the community in understanding their potential for exposure,in mitigating effects of exposure and in assessing adverse health effects that maybe related to those exposures. What agencies will be involved in implementingthis educational campaign and how will it be funded?

Response:ATSDR will implement the educational program by providing professionaleducation to the health professionals that interact with community memberspotentially exposed to site-related contaminants. We will encourage the healthprofessionals to discuss and assist the community in understanding theirpotential for health effects possibly associated with the Tutu Wellfield NPL site. The health professional education will be conducted for ATSDR by theAssociation of Occupational and Environmental Clinics (AOEC). The AOEC ispresently contacting the St. Thomas Hospital to begin arranging the professionaleducation. When provided, ATSDR and AOEC plan to include healthprofessionals from the East End Family Health Center in health educationprograms.

Comment:Additionally, from what source will information come to prompt a reevaluationby ATSDR? Is there a data base or other mechanism set up to gather andcompile this kind of information? And, if a follow-up is required, who will payfor it?

Response:The information can come from any governmental agency (e.g., EPA, VIDPNR),the responsible parties, or the public. ATSDR maintains a computer database(HAZDAT) which tracks all of ATSDR's involvements at Superfund sites. Portions of HAZDAT can be accessed via the Internet (atsdr1.atsdr.cdc.gov).

ATSDR is funded by the "Superfund Trust Fund." Whenever possible, EPA isrequired to recover any money spent out of the Superfund from the responsibleparties.



Table of Contents

  
 
USA.gov: The U.S. Government's Official Web PortalDepartment of Health and Human Services
Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, 4770 Buford Hwy NE, Atlanta, GA 30341
Contact CDC: 800-232-4636 / TTY: 888-232-6348

A-Z Index

  1. A
  2. B
  3. C
  4. D
  5. E
  6. F
  7. G
  8. H
  9. I
  10. J
  11. K
  12. L
  13. M
  14. N
  15. O
  16. P
  17. Q
  18. R
  19. S
  20. T
  21. U
  22. V
  23. W
  24. X
  25. Y
  26. Z
  27. #