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PUBLIC HEALTH ASSESSMENT

ROSEN SITE
(a/k/a ROSEN BROTHERS SITE)
CORTLAND COUNTY, CORTLAND, NEW YORK


ENVIRONMENTAL CONTAMINATION AND OTHER HAZARDS

To evaluate if a site poses an existing or potential hazard to the exposed or potentially exposed population(s), the site conditions are characterized. This site characterization involves a review of sampling data for environmental media (i.e., soil, surface water, groundwater, air), both on- and off-site and an evaluation of the physical hazards near the site which may pose an additional health risk to the community or receptor population(s).

Contaminants selected for further evaluation are identified based upon consideration of the following factors:

  1. Concentrations of contaminant(s) in environmental media both on- and off-site;
  2. Field data quality, laboratory data quality, and sample design;
  3. Comparison of on-site and off-site contaminant concentrations in environmental media with typical background levels;
  4. Comparison of contaminant concentrations in environmental media both on- and off-site with public health assessment comparison values for (1) non-carcinogenic endpoints, and (2) carcinogenic endpoints. These comparison values include Environmental Media Evaluation Guides (EMEGs), Cancer Risk Evaluation Guides (CREGs), drinking water standards and other relevant guidelines; and
  5. Community health concerns.

The selected contaminant(s) are evaluated in the Public Health Implications section (Toxicological Evaluation) of this PHA to determine whether exposure to these chemicals is of public health significance.

The On-site Contamination and the Off-site Contamination subsections include discussions of sampling data for environmental media. Tentatively identified compounds (TICs) and analytical results reported as "estimated" or as being found in the associated quality control blank for environmental samples collected during the RI are not included for evaluation in this PHA. If a chemical is selected for further evaluation in one medium, that contaminant will be reported in all other media, if it is detected. A contaminant selected for further evaluation does not necessarily mean that it will cause adverse health effects from exposure.

For the purpose of evaluating environmental sampling data and site conditions in this PHA, "on-site" refers to the area within the property boundary (i.e., the fenceline) as indicated on Figures 4 and 5 (Appendix A) and "off-site" refers to all areas outside of this property boundary. For this PHA, the data reviewed includes historical data generated as part of the phase II investigation at the site and data generated during the RI. Figure 4 (Appendix A) shows the locations of sampling points for sediment, soil and waste samples collected during the phase II investigation in 1986. Figures 5, 6 and 7 (Appendix A) show the locations of sampling points for surface water, sediment, groundwater, soil borings and leachate samples collected during the RI.

A. On-Site Contamination

Groundwater

During the phase II investigation, four monitoring wells were installed within the site fenceline (refer to Figure 4). Groundwater samples collected from these wells during the phase II investigation were analyzed for organic and inorganic (metal) constituents. Refer to Table 1 for analytical results.

As part of the RI, several existing monitoring wells at the site were inspected and found to be suitable for use as sample points. In addition, 10 monitoring wells were installed at the site during the RI (refer to Figure 5). Groundwater samples from these monitoring wells were analyzed for volatile organic compounds (VOCs), semi-volatile organic compounds (SVOCs), pesticides, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), inorganic constituents and general water quality parameters. No SVOCs or pesticides were detected; the PCB Aroclor 1254 was found in samples from one monitoring well at levels ranging from 4-11 micrograms per liter (mcg/L). VOCs detected in groundwater included 1,1-dichloroethene (3-14 mcg/L), 1,1-dichloroethane (2-430 mcg/L), 1,2-dichloroethene (56 mcg/L), 1,1,1-trichloroethane (4-3,400 mcg/L), trichloroethene (1-45 mcg/L), tetrachloroethene (77-81 mcg/L) and toluene (2 mcg/L). All these VOCs, except toluene, exceeded the NYS DOH drinking water standards and/or public health assessment comparison values (see Table 5). A summary of the metals found above applicable water quality standards and/or public health assessment comparison values (see Table 4) is presented in Table 3.

Three temporary groundwater monitoring wells were installed on-site between the main portion of the site and the former City of Cortland waste disposal area near the southern fenceline, to evaluate possible contaminant migration from this area (refer to Figure 6). Samples of water from these wells were analyzed for VOCs and inorganic constituents. VOCs found included chloromethane (1-3 mcg/L), vinyl chloride (14 mcg/L), 1,1-dichloroethene (3 mcg/L), trichloroethene (180-220 mcg/L), total xylenes (1-2 mcg/L), cis-1,2-dichloroethene (79-110 mcg/L) and trans-1,2-dichloroethene (11-14 mcg/L). A summary of inorganic constituents found in on-site groundwater at levels above the NYS DOH drinking water standards and/or public health assessment comparison values (see Table 5) is included in Table 3.

During the RI, three additional temporary groundwater monitoring wells were installed near monitoring well W-06 and the water was sampled and analyzed for VOCs. Results showed chloromethane (10-14 mcg/L), 1,1-dichloroethane (13-29 mcg/L), ethylbenzene (71 mcg/L) and 1,1,1-trichloroethane (16-24 mcg/L), toluene (1,200-1,500 mcg/L) and total xylenes (670-710 mcg/L) which were reported at levels above the NYS DOH drinking water standards or public health assessment comparison values (see Table 5).

Surface Water

During the RI, one surface water sample was collected from the tributary to Perplexity Creek from a downstream area within the fenceline. This sample was analyzed for VOCs, SVOCs, pesticides, PCBs and inorganic constituents. No VOCs, pesticides, PCBs or SVOCs were found. All metals were below applicable surface water quality standards and/or public health assessment comparison values.

Sediments

As part of the phase II investigation, one sediment sample was collected from a bermed area along a stretch of the tributary to Perplexity Creek which passes through the site (refer to Figure 4). This sample was analyzed for organic and inorganic constituents, including cyanide (refer to Table 1). Total polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), comprised of chrysene, fluoranthene and pyrene, as well as the inorganic compounds lead, arsenic and antimony, were the only contaminants in sediment that exceeded their expected background levels and/or public health assessment comparison values (see Table 6).

During the RI, an on-site sediment sample was collected from the same general location as the on-site surface water sample and analyzed for VOCs, SVOCs, PCBs, pesticides and inorganic constituents. No pesticides, PCBs or VOCs were found. The only SVOCs found included fluoranthene at 1.7 milligrams per kilogram (mg/kg), pyrene at 1.6 mg/kg and bis(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate at 3.3 mg/kg). All metals were within expected background levels and/or below public health assessment comparison values. (See Table 6).

Three on-site sediment samples were collected from the tributary to Perplexity Creek as part of the supplemental sampling during the RI (refer to Figure 6). These samples were analyzed for SVOCs, PCBs and inorganic constituents. No PCBs were found; SVOCs detected included phenanthrene (1.3 mg/kg), fluoranthene (1.9 mg/kg), pyrene (0.72-2.9 mg/kg), benzo(b)fluoranthene (0.64 mg/kg), benzo(k)fluoranthene (1.0 mg/kg), and benzo(a)pyrene (0.72 mg/kg). All SVOCs as well as metals were within expected background levels and/or below public health assessment comparison values (see Table 6).

Soil Vapor

During the RI, a soil vapor survey was completed at the site; 214 soil vapor samples were collected for analysis of total VOCs. Results showed total VOCs ranging from 0-888 parts per million (ppm).

Surface Soils

One composite surface soil sample was collected from 12 locations throughout the site during the phase II investigation (refer to Figure 4). This sample was analyzed for organic and inorganic contaminants, including cyanide (refer to Table 1, Appendix B). Total PAHs comprised of benzo(a)pyrene, chrysene, pyrene, benzo(a)anthracene, fluoranthene and phenanthrene were the only contaminants in on-site surface soil that exceeded their expected background levels and/or public health assessment comparison values (see Table 6).

Thirty-four surface soil samples were collected from the site as part of the supplemental sampling during the RI (refer to Figure 6). Four of these samples were collected from visibly stained areas. Samples were analyzed for SVOCs, PCBs and metals. Of the five surface soil samples analyzed for PCBs, the PCB Aroclor 1248 was reported in one sample at 0.37 mg/kg and the PCB Aroclor 1254 was reported in four samples at levels ranging from 1.0-7.6 mg/kg. Results of the SVOC analyses showed total PAHs at levels ranging from 0.445 to 2,271 mg/kg, total phthalates from 0.09 to 43 mg/kg and 3-chloro-3-methylphenol up to 0.088 mg/kg. Carcinogenic PAHs found in on-site surface soil samples include benzo(a)anthracene (0.44-130 mg/kg), chrysene (0.52-130 mg/kg), benzo(b)fluoranthene (0.52-75 mg/kg), benzo(k)fluoranthene (0.45-100 mg/kg), benzo(a)pyrene (0.41-86 mg/kg) and indeno (1,2,3-cd)pyrene (4.1-47 mg/kg). The concentrations of total PAHs exceeded public health assessment cancer comparison values for these contaminants (see Table 6). The only metal found above background levels in on-site soils was lead which ranged from 144 mg/kg to 2,940 mg/kg.

Soil

In October 1985, a soil sample was collected and submitted to the NYS DOH Wadsworth Center for Laboratories and Research for analyses of VOCs and SVOCs. Results are summarized in Table 2. There is no information about the sample depth. No contaminants were found at levels above their public health assessment comparison values (see Table 6).

As part of the supplemental investigation, 12 shallow soil borings were installed near monitoring well W-07 and the former capacitor areas to evaluate the presence of PCBs (refer to Figure 6). In general, PCBs were detected in shallow soils (0-3 feet) at levels ranging from 1 to greater than 25 mg/kg. A composite soil sample (0-10 feet) was also analyzed from one boring for VOCs and SVOCs. Results showed benzene (0.008 mg/kg), toluene (0.018 mg/kg), total xylenes (0.022 mg/kg), total phthalates (1.51 mg/kg) and total PAHs (2.40 mg/kg) at levels which did not exceed expected background values and/or public health assessment comparison values (see Table 6).

Subsurface Soil

During the RI, five test borings were installed around the cooling pond (refer to Figure 5). One subsurface soil sample was collected from each boring for analyses of VOCs, SVOCs, pesticides, PCBs and metals. Depths of the samples ranged from 2-8 feet. No pesticides or PCBs were detected in any of the samples. No SVOCs were found above detection limits. The VOCs acetone (0.021-0.085 mg/kg), toluene (0.01-0.076 mg/kg), 1,1-dichloro-ethane (0.04-0.012 mg/kg), 2-butanone (0.039-0.083 mg/kg) and 1,1,1-trichloroethane (0.012-0.027 mg/kg) were found, but at levels below public health assessment comparison values (see Table 6). Arsenic was detected in one sample above background levels (51.4 mg/kg).

On-site subsurface soils samples were also collected from test pits during the RI for analyses of VOCs, SVOCs, pesticides, PCBs and metals (refer to Figure 5). Sample depths ranged from 1 to 12 feet for all samples except for the one taken from test pit 9, which was a composite sample from 0-1 foot deep. However, no VOCs, SVOCs, pesticides or PCBs were found in this sample and all metals were below background levels. For all other samples, the only VOCs found were 2-butanone (0.036 mg/kg), toluene (4.2 mg/kg), ethylbenzene (0.069 mg/kg), total xylenes (0.62-4.3 mg/kg), acetone (0.071-0.1 mg/kg) and 1,1,1-trichloroethane (0.01-0.28 mg/kg). No pesticides were found; the PCB Aroclor 1260 was found in one sample at 0.61 mg/kg and acenaphthylene was found in two samples at 3.5 mg/kg and 3.6 mg/kg. Several other SVOCs, including naphthalene (57-110 mg/kg), 2-methylnaphthalene (26-27 mg/kg), acenaphthene (19 mg/kg), dibenzofuran (19-20 mg/kg), fluorene (22-23 mg/kg), phenanthrene (50-55 mg/kg), anthracene (14-16 mg/kg), di-n-butylphthalate (24 mg/kg), fluoranthene (34-41 mg/kg), pyrene (38-42 mg/kg), benzo(a)-anthracene (17-18 mg/kg), chrysene (14 mg/kg), and bis(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate (15-17 mg/kg) were found in several samples. Of all these contaminants, only benzo(a)anthracene and chrysene were detected at levels above public health assessment comparison values (see Table 6).

Subsurface soil (4-6 feet deep) samples were also collected from three borings near monitoring well W-06 for VOC analysis (refer to Figure 6, Appendix A). Results showed 2-butanone (0.1 mg/kg), chloroethane (0.03 mg/kg), 1,1-dichloroethane (0.052 mg/kg), 1,1,1-trichloroethane (0.017 mg/kg), ethylbenzene (1.2 mg/kg), methylene chloride (11 mg/kg), toluene (24 mg/kg) and total xylenes (13 mg/kg).

During the RI, soil borings were installed at the site as part of monitoring well installation. Several of these borings were installed at the site perimeter, inside the fenceline. Subsurface soil samples were analyzed for VOCs, SVOCs, pesticides, PCBs and metals; sample depths ranged from 2-18 feet. The only VOCs found were 1,1,1-trichloroethane (2.1 mg/kg) and tetrachloroethene (0.48-2.9 mg/kg). SVOCs found included isophorone (0.73 mg/kg), butylbenzylphthalate (0.85 mg/kg) and bis(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate (0.8-11 mg/kg). The PCB Aroclor 1254 was found in one sample at 5.8 mg/kg which is at a level greater than the public health assessment cancer comparison value for this contaminant (see Table 6). No metals were found above background levels.

Air

No on-site air samples were collected as part of the phase II investigation. As part of the RI, an ambient air quality survey was completed for the site to identify possible source areas of VOCs emissions. Results of this survey showed only one area on-site where VOCs exceeded background levels. A reading of 25 ppm for total VOCs was recorded near the opening of the underground storage tank at the northwest corner of the site. Two upwind and five downwind air samples were collected from areas within the fenceline during the RI for analysis of VOCs (refer to Figure 5). The upwind samples were collected along the western fenceline of the site and the downwind samples were collected along the northern fenceline. Results showed that no VOCs were detected at the upwind sample locations. Acetone was detected at three of the downwind locations at levels ranging from 12-57 parts per billion (ppb); toluene (3.7 ppb) was detected at one downwind air sample location. Levels of both contaminants were below the public health assessment comparison values of 148 ppb for acetone and 105 ppb for toluene.

Wastes

During the phase II investigation, two composite solid waste samples were collected from four sample points on-site (refer to Figure 4, Appendix A). These samples were analyzed for organic and inorganic constituents, including cyanide. Additionally, a liquid waste sample was collected from a concrete pit at the site. This sample was evaluated for inorganic constituents, VOCs and PCBs (refer to Table 1).

During the RI, two waste samples were collected from test pits T-06 and T-10 at depths ranging from 2-5 feet (refer to Figure 5). These samples were analyzed for organics and metals. No VOCs, SVOCs or pesticides were detected in these samples. The following metals were found: arsenic (0.0073 mg/kg), barium (0.24-0.49 mg/kg), cadmium (0.0086-0.018 mg/kg), chromium (0.018 mg/kg), lead (0.044-0.058 mg/kg) and silver (0.0087 mg/kg).

B. Off-Site Contamination

Surface Water

In February 1990, the CCPD collected several surface water samples from Perplexity Creek and the tributary to Perplexity Creek. Results showed 1,1-dichloroethene (1.8 mcg/L), 1,1,1-trichloroethane (3.0-5.0 mcg/L) and trichloroethene (5.0 mcg/L) in upgradient samples. 1,1-Dichloroethene was at a level that exceeded this contaminant's public health assessment cancer comparison value of 0.11 mcg/L. The only contaminant found in downgradient samples was 1,1,1-trichloroethane (0.5 mcg/L). This chemical did not exceed its public health assessment comparison value.

In April 1990, four surface water samples were collected from Perplexity Creek and its tributary at areas upstream of the site. The samples were analyzed for VOCs and no contaminants were detected.

As part of the RI, two surface water samples were collected from Perplexity Creek and its tributary upstream of the site (refer to Figure 5). Samples were analyzed for VOCs, SVOCs, PCBs, pesticides and inorganic constituents. One surface water sample was collected from a downstream location near the point where the creek converges with its tributary and discharges to the catch basin at Pendleton Street. No VOCs, SVOCs, pesticides or PCBs were found and all metals detected were below public health assessment comparison values.

Sediment

Off-site sediment samples were collected from the same general locations as the off-site surface water samples during the RI (refer to Figure 5). Sediment samples were analyzed for VOCs, SVOCs, PCBs, pesticides and inorganic constituents. No pesticides or PCBs were found. Acetone was found in all three samples; at the upstream locations, acetone levels ranged from 0.017 mg/kg to 0.19 mg/kg. The highest concentration of acetone (0.23 mg/kg) was found in the downstream sediment sample location in Perplexity Creek. Several SVOCs were found in the upstream off-site sediment sample from Perplexity Creek; however, pyrene (5.3 mg/kg) and fluoranthene (3.2 mg/kg) were the only two SVOCs found in the downstream sediment sample from Perplexity Creek. All metals were within expected background levels or public health assessment comparison values (see Table 6).

Three sediment samples were collected from Perplexity Creek as part of the supplemental sampling conducted during the RI (refer to Figure 6). These samples were analyzed for SVOCs, PCBs and inorganic constituents. No PCBs were found; SVOCs detected included the following PAHs: phenanthrene (1.7-2.6 mg/kg), fluoranthene (1.9-2.0 mg/kg), pyrene (3.8-6.4 mg/kg), benzo(a)anthracene (1.3-1.7 mg/kg), chrysene (1.8-2.2 mg/kg), benzo(b)fluoranthene (1.7-2.3 mg/kg), benzo(k)fluoranthene (1.9-2.5 mg/kg), benzo(a)pyrene (1.5-1.9 mg/kg) and benzo(g,h,i)perylene (0.94-1.6 mg/kg). Public health assessment cancer comparison values were exceeded by the carcinogenic PAHs (see Table 6). All metals were within expected background ranges and/or below public health assessment comparison values.

Surface Soils

Six surface soil samples were collected from both industrial and non-industrial settings in off-site areas to evaluate background concentrations of SVOCs and metals (refer to Figure 7). Total phthalates and PAHs for the industrial setting ranged from 0.16-3.2 mg/kg and 18-76 mg/kg, respectively. Total PAHs exceeded background levels and public health assessment cancer comparison values for these contaminants (see Table 6). Carcinogenic PAHs included benzo(a)anthracene (1.3-7.7 mg/kg), chrysene (1.3-6.9 mg/kg), benzo(b)fluoranthene (1.3-6 mg/kg), benzo(k)fluoranthene (0.96-4.9 mg/kg), benzo(a)pyrene (1.0-5.8 mg/kg) and indeno (1,2,3-cd)pyrene (3-4.3 mg/kg). Total phthalates and PAHs for the non-industrial setting ranged from 0.08-0.23 mg/kg and 0.08-0.073 mg/kg, respectively, and did not exceed expected background levels and/or public health assessment comparison values. In addition, all metals were within expected background ranges for both industrial and non-industrial soils.

Subsurface Soil

During the RI, subsurface soil samples were collected from soil borings that were drilled along the site perimeter. Two of these borings were situated just outside the fenceline along the western site perimeter. One subsurface soil sample was collected for analyses of VOCs, SVOCs, pesticides, PCBs and metals. No VOCs, pesticides or PCBs were found in this sample. Pyrene (0.94 mg/kg) was the only SVOC found, but at a level below its public health assessment comparison value (see Table 6). No metals were found above background levels.

Groundwater

During the phase II investigation, one monitoring well was installed outside the western fenceline boundary (refer to Figure 4, Appendix A). Groundwater samples collected from this well during the phase II investigation were analyzed for organic and inorganic constituents. The analytical results are shown in Table 1.

Several monitoring wells were installed at off-site areas during the RI (refer to Figure 5). Groundwater samples from these wells were analyzed for VOCs, SVOCs, pesticides, PCBs and inorganic constituents. VOCs detected included chloromethane (11 mcg/L), vinyl chloride (2-31 mcg/L), 1,1-dichloroethene (1-12 mcg/L), 1,1-dichloroethane (3-100 mcg/L), cis-1,2-dichloroethene (29-79 mcg/L), trans-1,2-dichloroethene (10 mcg/L), 1,1,1-trichloroethane (5-340 mcg/L) and trichloroethene (2-200 mcg/L). No SVOCs, PCBs or pesticides were found in off-site groundwater. A summary of the metals found is presented in Table 3.

C. Quality Assurance and Quality Control

In preparing this public health assessment, ATSDR and the NYS DOH rely on the information in the referenced documents and assume that adequate quality assurance and quality control (QA/QC) measures were followed with regard to chain-of-custody, laboratory procedures, and data reporting, unless otherwise noted. The validity of the analyses and conclusions drawn for this public health assessment is determined by the completeness and reliability of that information.

During laboratory analyses of environmental samples collected during the phase II investigation, appropriate QA/QC measures were followed to ensure the validity of sample data. Tentatively identified compounds (TICs) and analytical results qualified as "estimated" or found in the associated quality control blank for samples collected during the phase II investigation are not included as part of evaluations in this PHA.

During the RI, field and laboratory data were reviewed to ensure that quality assurance/quality control (QA/QC) measures and objectives were followed. Field data calculations, interpretations, field data records, and documents were reviewed and all laboratory analytical data were reviewed and validated. The field equipment was checked daily for proper maintenance and the accuracy of field measurements with field equipment was assessed by review of the calibration and maintenance logs. All sampling methods and sampling point strategies followed approved US EPA or other applicable protocols used in site characteriz-ation to ensure that data gathered were representative.

Quality control samples, such as laboratory duplicates (splits), laboratory blanks, standards, matrix spikes and matrix spike duplicates (MS/MSD), field duplicates, and trip blanks were analyzed to assess the quality of laboratory and field data. Laboratory duplicates (splits) samples and MS/MSD samples were analyzed to check analytical reproducibility. Field duplicates were submitted to check the variability of chemical constituents in the field. Trip blanks that were supplied by the laboratory were analyzed for VOCs to check for analytes introduced during shipping and handling of the samples prior to, during, and after sample collection. Rinse blanks were submitted for analysis to check the cleanliness of the sampling devices and effectiveness of the cleaning procedures.

Performance and system audits were periodically performed during the RI to ensure that data of high quality were collected. System audits involved comparisons of the scheduled QA/QC activities from the RI work plan with the QA/QC activities actually performed in the field and laboratory. Performance audits were conducted as a quantitative assessment of precision and accuracy of the data gathered and the laboratory results generated. For all sampling events, the completeness of the data is reported to be 100 percent. TICs and analytical results qualified as "estimated" or found in the associated quality control blank for samples collected during the RI are not included for evaluation in this PHA.

D. Physical and Other Hazards

Currently, there are some small amounts of physical hazards at the site left over from EPA's collection and recycling effort in August 1997. Remnants of old buildings and other structures and a partially exposed buried tank pose additional physical hazards at the site.

Before secure fencing was installed, numerous physical hazards at the site posed serious public health concerns. Of particular concern was the potential for children who played at the site to become trapped inside old refrigerators. The southern site perimeter is adjacent to the Cortland City High School property and in the past children traveled across the site going to and from the school. Additionally, an elementary school is within 0.25 miles of the site.

E. Toxic Chemical Release Inventory (TRI)

The Toxic Chemical Release Inventory (TRI) has been developed by the US EPA from chemical release information provided by those industries that are required to report contaminant emissions and releases annually. The NYS DOH reviewed air emissions data reported to the TRI by industrial facilities identified to be within a 2.5 mile radius of the Rosen Brothers site for the years 1988 through 1993. These data were reviewed to evaluate other sources of contamination that may pose an additional health risk to the exposed population at or near the Rosen Brothers site.

The NYS DOH has developed a screening model to estimate if potential contaminant concentrations resulting from air emissions at a facility may be contributing to community (receptor population) exposures to contaminants at a site. This model uses information about the facility location (distance from the exposed population) and annual air emission data to calculate annual average air concentrations at a distance of 0.5 miles from the site.

Seven industrial facilities that report emissions to the TRI were identified within a 2.5 mile radius of the Rosen Brothers site (refer to Figure 8). These facilities are Rubbermaid-Cortland, Inc.; Bestway Enterprises, Inc.; Pall Trinity Micro Corporation; Brewer-Titchner Merrill; Buckbee-Mears Cortland; Potter Paint Company, Inc.; and Cortland Line Company, Inc. A summary of the TRI-reported air releases by these facilities for the year 1993 is presented in Table 4. The 1993 data appear to adequately represent releases from previous years (i.e., 1988-1992). For Rubbermaid-Cortland, Inc., which did not file TRI data for 1993, data from previous years (i.e., 1988 and 1989) were also evaluated.

Results of the screening evaluation indicate that TRI-reported air emissions from the facilities identified would not increase contaminant levels in ambient air near the Rosen Brothers site to levels above the NYS DOH screening criteria of 0.1 microgram per cubic meter (mcg/m3) for chromium, 0.02 mcg/m3 for nickel, and 1 mcg/m3 for other compounds. Based on the results of the screening evaluation, the public health significance of contaminant air emissions from TRI facilities as an additional source of community exposures at Rosen Brothers site will not be evaluated further in this PHA.

PATHWAYS ANALYSES

This section of the PHA identifies potential and completed exposure pathways associated with past, present and future use of the site. An exposure pathway is the process by which an individual may be exposed to contaminants originating from a site. An exposure pathway is comprised of five elements, including: (1) a contaminant source; (2) environmental media and transport mechanisms; (3) a point of exposure; (4) a route of exposure; and (5) a receptor population.

The source of contamination is the source of contaminant release to the environment (any waste disposal area or point of discharge); if the original source is unknown, it is the environmental media (soil, air, biota, water) which are contaminated at the point of exposure. Environmental media and transport mechanisms "carry" contaminants from the source to points where human exposure may occur. The exposure point is a location where actual or potential human contact with a contaminated medium may occur. The route of exposure is the manner in which a contaminant actually enters or contacts the body (i.e., ingestion, inhalation, dermal adsorption). The receptor population is people who are exposed or may be exposed to contaminants at a point of exposure.

Two types of exposure pathways are evaluated in the PHA. A completed exposure pathway exists when the criteria for all five elements of an exposure pathway are documented; a potential exposure pathway exists when the criteria for any one of the five elements comprising an exposure pathway is not met. An exposure pathway is considered to be eliminated when any one of the five elements comprising an exposure pathway has not existed in the past, does not exist in the present and will never exist in the future.

A. Completed Exposure Pathways

Wastes

In the past, it is likely that people working at the site were exposed to contaminants in on-site wastes through dermal contact, ingestion and inhalation of volatile organic compounds. Worker exposure to contaminants in wastes most likely occurred during waste handling and transfer operations at the site.

Unauthorized persons and others who accessed the site before it was fenced may have been exposed to on-site wastes via dermal contact and inhalation of volatile compounds. Site access was not restricted and children reportedly walked across the site going to and from school. These past exposures may have occurred daily but were most likely for short periods of time.

On-site Surface Soil

In the past, it is likely that unauthorized persons, including school children, or individuals working at the site were exposed to contaminants in on-site surface soil. Possible exposures to contaminants in surface soils may have occurred via dermal contact, incidental ingestion and inhalation of contaminated soil particulates. Historical information indicates that drummed and liquid wastes were drained onto the ground during past site operations. The site was fenced in 1990, reducing access by unauthorized persons.

Air

In the past, people working at and near the site and people who walked across the site were most likely exposed to VOCs in ambient air through inhalation. Past exposures may have also occurred via inhalation of contaminated particulates. On-site workers and others who worked or lived near the site in the past were likely exposed to contaminants in air emissions from the on-site incinerator prior to 1970. Historical air sampling data do not exist and the public health significance of past exposures to contaminants in air cannot be fully evaluated.

In the past, there was a buried tank and an open pit at the site which contained liquids from which VOCs could volatilize. Since the RI was completed, the buried tank has been emptied and the open concrete pit drained and removed. Sampling of air during the RI showed acetone and toluene in samples collected along the northern site fenceline (downwind). However, as discussed under the Environmental Contamination and Other Hazards section (subsection A, On-Site Contamination), the maximum concentrations of these contaminants are below the public health assessment comparison values and exposure to these levels is not likely to result in adverse health effects.

The Potter Paint Company, which is within 0.5 mile west of the Rosen Brothers site, has reported emissions of both acetone and toluene to the TRI for the years 1989 through 1993. This includes the timeframe during which air samples were collected at the site.

B. Potential Exposure Pathways

Groundwater

There is no indication at this time that this pathway is complete. Groundwater contamination from the site is not known to exist at residential properties. However, supplemental groundwater sampling performed since the completion of the remedial investigation shows contamination in downgradient monitoring wells along Huntington Street north of the site. Athough the area is served by public water, and contaminated groundwater is unlikely to be used as a source of drinking water, the CCHD has indicated that well points likely exist in residential areas near the site. Water from these wells, if used, is most likely used for such ooutdoor activities as watering lawns and washing cars. It is possible, however, that some people may choose to use this water for drinking and bathing. Groundwater contamination exists on-site (VOCs, metals, PCBs) and has not yet been remediated. VOCs have been identified in groundwater at off-site non-residential areas. There is a potential that future exposures to contaminants in groundwater could occur if the contamination is not remediated and it continues to migrate towards residential areas. People who use contaminated groundwater for gardening or other non-potable purposes could be exposed to contaminants in groundwater via ingestion of homegrown vegetables, inhalation and dermal contact. These exposures would likely be infrequent and for periods of short duration.

Contaminated Particulates

Because surface and subsurface soil contamination exists at the site, contaminated particulates may become airborne during any intrusive activities which disturb soils. Sampling of surface soils during the RI has shown PCBs, lead, VOCs and PAHs; subsurface soil samples on-site have shown VOCs, arsenic, PCBs and SVOCs. The site is well vegetated, minimizing the potential for dusts to blow off-site. During the winter months, snow cover further reduces the potential for off-site migration of dusts. During the October 1993 site visit, several areas (i.e., "patches") of the ground surface showed no vegetation or grass cover. Although the unvegetated areas are not considered to be significant sources of dust, contaminated dust could become airborne from uncovered areas by winds blowing across the site. People who work at or near the site could be exposed to contaminated dusts blowing off-site. Airborne particulates could also deposit on homegrown fruits and vegetables. Sampling of particulates in air was not completed during the RI. Given that the site is well-vegetated and that contaminant levels in surface soil are low, the potential for significant exposure, if any, from fruits and vegetables or inhalation of dusts is unlikely.

Use of appropriate work practices and personal protective equipment will minimize the potential for exposure to contaminated particulates by on-site workers and others in off-site areas during remedial activities at the site.

Sediments

Sampling of sediments in Perplexity Creek and the unnamed tributary on-site showed VOCs, SVOC and metals. Sampling of sediments in these waterbodies at off-site areas showed VOCs and SVOCs. There is no information to suggest that children play in Perplexity Creek or the unnamed tributary. Neither of these waterbodies are known to support edible fish populations and it is unlikely that fishing occurs in these streams at or downgradient of the site. The potential for people to be exposed to site contaminants through ingestion, dermal contact and inhalation of contaminated sediments is minimal. However, such exposures could occur, but would most likely be infrequent and for short periods of time.

On-Site Soils

On-site surface and subsurface soils are contaminated with VOCs, SVOCs, PCBs and metals. Past exposures to contaminants in soil have been discussed in the Completed Pathways section. Currently the potential for direct contact with these soils is minimal because of the existing fencing and site access restrictions. Only authorized personnel working under an approved health and safety plan are allowed onto the site. Use of personal protective equipment and approved work practices should minimize worker exposure to contaminants in on-site soils during remedial activities at the site.

Off-Site Surface Soil

PAHs were detected in off-site surface soil samples collected from industrial areas north and east of the site at concentrations above background levels and/or public health assessment comparison values. It is possible that wind-borne deposition of contaminated particulates from the Rosen Brothers site may have contributed, in part, to this contamination. The potential for exposure to PAHs in off-site soils at nearby industrial properties is likely limited primarily to workers and maintenance personnel. These exposures would tend to be infrequent and of short duration. The potential for off-site migration of contaminants in surface water runoff onto adjacent properties is minimal because the Rosen site is surrounded by two creeks; any surface water runoff from the site will most likely drain into the creeks.

C. Eliminated Exposure Pathways

Biota (Fish and Wildlife)

Perplexity Creek, a small intermittent stream, does not support an edible fish population that might bioaccumulate contaminants in sediments or surface water. Therefore, the potential for exposure to site contaminants by ingestion of fish is not likely to occur. Exposure to contaminants that may bioaccumulate in wildlife that is hunted for food is unlikely. Due to existing site access restrictions and the location of the site within the Cortland City limits, this exposure pathway is not likely to occur. There are no known fisheries downstream of the site.

Private Drinking Water Supply Wells

All residences and businesses in the area near the site are served by a municipal water supply. The CCHD has established a well drilling permit process and no permits are issued to private individuals for installation of potable supply wells if they reside within areas served by the City's public water supply. There are no known potable supply wells near the site.

Public Water Supply Wells

Public water supply wells that serve the City of Cortland and other nearby communities rely on groundwater from the aquifer which underlies the site. Groundwater flow from the site is not likely to affect these public water supply wells because of hydrogeological and topographic conditions. The nearest public water supply wells serve the City of Cortland and are about one mile west and two miles northwest of the site. These public water supply wells are hydraulically upgradient of the Rosen site and are not likely to be affected by site contamination. The Town of Cortlandville's public water supply wells are more than two miles southwest of the site; these wells are not likely to be affected by groundwater contamination at the Rosen Brothers site because of topographic and geologic conditions.

Surface Water

Perplexity Creek runs along the northern fenceline of the site and merges with an unnamed tributary at the northeast corner of the site near Pendleton Street. The combined drainage flows through a buried culvert under Pendleton Street, eventually draining to the Tioughnioga River. No contaminants were detected in surface water on-site. In February 1990, 1,1,1-trichloroethane was found in one surface water sample downgradient of the site. However, sampling during the RI did not confirm off-site migration of site contaminants in surface water.

D. Data Gaps

Soil Vapor

During the RI, VOCs were identified during a soil vapor survey at the site. In response to concerns expressed by the citizens action group, CURB, the potential for migration of VOCs in on-site groundwater to affect indoor air quality in a hypothetical building at the site was evaluated through the US EPA. This screening level analysis assumed that a building existed at the site and that VOCs volatilized from groundwater at the site. The highest on-site groundwater concentrations for each chemical were used to estimate possible indoor air contaminant levels. Findings of this screening evaluation showed that adverse health effects associated with the estimated indoor air concentrations would not occur.

VOCs have been detected in groundwater at off-site areas. VOCs can volatize from groundwater into the adjacent soils. VOCs in soil gas at the site can also migrate to off-site areas through the subsurface. The site is bordered by two intermittent streams which may minimize off-site migration of shallow soil gas to adjacent properties. There is insufficient information to fully characterize possible exposures to contaminants in soil gas at and near the site. However, there are no homes bordering the site and the nearest residential facilities (apartments) are built above ground and do not have basements which could accumulate vapors. In addition, groundwater contamination is not known to exist at residential properties near the site.

PUBLIC HEALTH IMPLICATIONS

A. Toxicological Evaluation

An analysis of the toxicological implications of the human exposure pathways of concern is presented below. To evaluate the potential health risks from contaminants of concern associated with the Rosen Brothers site, the NYS DOH has assessed the risks for cancer and non-cancer health effects. The health effects are related to contaminant concentration, exposure pathway, exposure frequency and duration. For additional information on how the NYS DOH determined and qualified health risks applicable to this health assessment, refer to Appendix C.

  1. Past completed and potential ingestion, dermal contact and inhalation exposure to contaminants in on-site surface soils and wastes.

    In the past, it is likely that workers at the Rosen Brothers site were exposed to contaminants in on-site surface soils. It is also possible that prior to the site being completely fenced in 1990, trespassers including school children could have come in contact with these contaminated soils. Major on-site soil contaminants detected were total polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) at levels as high as 2,271 mg/kg, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) at levels ranging from 1 to greater than 25 mg/kg and lead as high as 2,940 mg/kg.

    Individual PAHs detected include benzo(a)pyrene, benzo(a)anthracene, benzo(b)fluoranthene, benzo(k)fluoranthene and chrysene. These PAHs cause cancer in laboratory animals exposed to high levels over their lifetimes (ATSDR, 1995c). Common cancers associated with exposure to PAHs include skin, respiratory and gastrointestinal tract cancers. Chemicals that cause cancer in laboratory animals may also increase the risk in humans who are exposed to lower levels over long periods of time. Whether or not these chemicals cause cancer in humans is not known. Based on the results of animal studies, it is estimated that chronic past exposure of workers and trespassers to PAHs found in on-site surface soils at the Rosen Brothers site could pose a moderate and low increased cancer risk, respectively. In addition, PAHs cause noncarcinogenic effects, primarily to the immune and blood cell-forming systems. Although the risks of noncarcinogenic effects from exposure to PAH-contaminated soils are not completely understood, the existing data suggest that they would be minimal for both worker and trespasser exposures in the past.

    The other contaminants in on-site soil selected for further evaluation are PCBs and lead. PCBs cause primarily liver cancer in laboratory animals exposed to high levels over their lifetimes (ATSDR, 1995b). Based on the results of animal studies, it is estimated that chronic exposure of workers and trespassers to PCBs found in on-site surface soils at the Rosen Brothers site could pose a low increased cancer risk. PCBs also cause noncarcinogenic toxic effects. Human effects reported after occupational exposures to PCBs include skin, eye and respiratory tract irritation and less frequently, effects on the liver and the nervous and digestive systems (ATSDR, 1995b). There may be a link between a mother's increased exposure to PCBs and effects on her child's birthweight and behavior (ATSDR, 1995b; Rogan and Gladen, 1991, 1992). PCBs have also caused skin, liver, nervous system, immune system and reproductive effects in animals (ATSDR, 1995b). Although the risks of noncarcinogenic effects from exposure to on-site soils contaminated with PCBs are not completely understood, the existing data suggest that they would be minimal and low for worker and trespasser exposure, respectively.

    Chronic exposure to lead is predominantly associated with neurological and hematological effects and the developing fetus and young children are particularly sensitive to lead-induced neurological effects (ATSDR, 1993c). However, the relatively low potential for continuous daily exposure to on-site surface soil at the Rosen site particularly by young children indicates that the risk of adverse health effects from lead is minimal.

  2. Potential exposure to site contaminants in groundwater.

    On-site and off-site groundwater are contaminated with organic chemicals and metals at concentrations that exceed New York State drinking water standards and/or public health assessment comparison values (Table 5). Therefore, these chemicals have been selected for further evaluation (see below). Although the area is served by public water, well points likely exist in residential areas near the site. Water from these wells, if used, is most likely used for outdoor purposes such as watering gardens and lawns, and washing cars. Although unlikely, some people may choose to use these wells for drinking water, bathing, showering, and washing dishes. If off-site migration of contaminated groundwater is not controlled, shallow well-points could be affected by site contaminants. People who use their private groundwater wells for household purposes such as drinking and bathing, could be chronically exposed to contaminants by ingestion, skin contact, and inhalation. Potential exposures from non-potable uses such as watering lawns and gardens are much lower and would likely be infrequent and for short duration periods.

    Organic Compounds

    Vinyl chloride is a known human carcinogen (ATSDR, 1995g). Chronic exposure to drinking water contaminated with vinyl chloride at the highest level (31 mcg/L) found in off-site groundwater could pose a high increased cancer risk. Trichloroethene, also known as trichloroethylene, was detected in off-site groundwater (highest level, 200 mcg/L) and has been found to cause cancer in laboratory animals exposed to high levels over their lifetimes (ATSDR, 1995f). Chemicals that cause cancer in laboratory animals may also increase the risk of cancer in humans who are exposed to lower levels over long periods of time. Based on the results of animal studies, chronic exposure to trichloroethene at the highest level found in off-site groundwater could pose a low increased cancer risk.

    PCB Aroclor 1254 (11 mcg/L), ethylbenzene (71 mcg/L) and toluene (1,500 mcg/L) were detected in on-site groundwater. The toxicological properties of Aroclor 1254 have already been discussed and based on the results of animal studies, chronic exposure to this contaminant at the highest level found in on-site groundwater could pose a high increased cancer risk. Toxicological data are inadequate to assess the carcinogenic potential of ethylbenzene and toluene (ATSDR, 1990c, 1994c).

    Contaminants that were found in on-site and off-site groundwater are: chloromethane (14 mcg/L), 1,1-dichloroethane (430 mcg/L), 1,1-dichloroethene (98 mcg/L), cis- and trans-1,2-dichloroethene (124 mcg/L), tetrachloroethene (81 mcg/L), 1,1,1-trichloroethane (3,400 mcg/L) and xylene (710 mcg/L). 1,1-Dichloroethene, tetrachloroethene (also known as tetrachloroethylene) and chloromethane have been found to cause cancer in laboratory animals exposed to high levels of these chemicals over their lifetimes (ATSDR, 1990a, 1995d, 1994a). Based on the results of animal studies, chronic exposure to the highest levels of 1,1-dichloroethene, tetrachloroethene and chloromethane found in on-site and off-site groundwater could pose a high, moderate and low increased cancer risk, respectively. Toxicological data are inadequate to assess the carcinogenic potential of 1,1,1-trichloroethane, cis- and trans-1,2-dichloroethene and xylene (ATSDR, 1994b; 1995e,h). Also, although toxicological data are inadequate to assess the carcinogenic potential of 1,1-dichloroethane, this chemical has been classified as a possible human carcinogen by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (ATSDR, 1990b).

    The chlorinated contaminants found in on-site and/or off-site groundwater as well as ethylbenzene, toluene and xylene can also produce noncarcinogenic toxic effects, primarily to the liver, kidneys and central nervous system. 1,1,1-Trichloroethane can also damage the cardiovascular system. The toxicological properties of Aroclor 1254 have already been discussed. Vinyl chloride and Aroclor 1254 are known to cause noncarcinogenic effects at exposure levels about one order of magnitude greater than potential exposure from off-site and on-site groundwater, respectively. The other contaminants are known to produce their noncarcinogenic effects at exposure levels that are several orders of magnitude greater than potential exposure to these chemicals in on-site and/or off-site groundwater. Although the risks of noncarcinogenic effects from potential exposure to contaminants in drinking water are not completely understood, the existing data suggest that they would be high for vinyl chloride and Aroclor 1254, low for trichloroethene and 1,1,1-trichloroethane, with the remaining organic contaminants posing a combined low risk.

    Inorganic Contaminants

    Inorganic contaminants selected for further evaluation in on-site and off-site groundwater are arsenic (25 mcg/L), aluminum (351,000 mcg/L), cadmium (90 mcg/L), chromium (54.2 mcg/L), iron (594,000 mcg/L), lead (266 mcg/L), magnesium (268,000 mcg/L), manganese (24,000 mcg/L), nickel (420 mcg/L), vanadium (631 mcg/L) and sodium (62,700 mcg/L). Studies of people exposed to high levels of arsenic in drinking water in foreign countries provide evidence of an association between arsenic ingestion and skin cancer (ATSDR, 1993a). To date, however, studies in the United States have not shown such an association. The existing data suggest that drinking water contaminated with arsenic at the highest levels (25 mcg/L) found in on-site and off-site groundwater could pose a high increased cancer risk. Arsenic also can cause nerve, liver, blood vessel damage and behavioral problems, including learning and hearing deficiencies (ATSDR, 1993a). Chronic exposure to drinking water contaminated with arsenic at the highest concentrations found in groundwater monitoring wells could pose a low risk of noncarcinogenic health effects.

    Although little is known about the chronic toxicity of aluminum in humans, some animal toxicity studies indicate that aluminum may cause nerve and skeletal damage and may also adversely effect the reproductive system (NYS DOH, 1990). Chronic exposure to drinking water contaminated with aluminum at the highest concentrations found in groundwater monitoring wells could pose a high risk of adverse health effects.

    The most sensitive effect from chronic elevated exposure to cadmium is kidney damage (ATSDR, 1993b). Chronic exposure to drinking water contaminated with cadmium at the highest concentrations found in groundwater monitoring wells at the site could pose a low risk of adverse health effects.

    The primary toxic effects associated with ingestion of large amounts of chromium have been kidney damage, birth defects and adverse effects on the reproductive system (ATSDR, 1993d). Chronic exposure to drinking water contaminated with chromium at the highest concentrations found in groundwater monitoring wells could pose a low risk of adverse health effects.

    Although iron is an essential nutrient, ingestion of large amounts can lead to iron toxicity characterized primarily by gastrointestinal effects and liver damage (Henretig and Temple, 1984). Its presence in drinking water, however, is objectionable primarily due to its affect on taste and staining of laundry and plumbing fixtures (WHO, 1984). Chronic exposure to drinking water contaminated with iron at the highest concentrations found in groundwater monitoring wells could pose a high risk of adverse health effects.

    Chronic exposure to lead is predominantly associated with neurological and hematological effects and the developing fetus and young children are particularly sensitive to lead-induced neurological effects (ATSDR, 1993c). Chronic exposure to drinking water contaminated with lead at the highest concentrations found in groundwater monitoring wells could pose a high risk of adverse health effects.

    Magnesium is an essential element in human nutrition. However, at very high levels (greater than about 250,000 mcg/L) magnesium may have a laxative effect, although the human body can adapt to this effect with time (NAS, 1977). Chronic exposure to drinking water contaminated with magnesium at the highest concentrations found in groundwater monitoring wells could pose a low risk of adverse health effects.

    Exposure to high levels of nickel can cause reproductive effects and allergic reactions (ATSDR, 1995a). Chronic exposure to drinking water contaminated with nickel at the highest concentrations found in groundwater monitoring wells could pose a minimal risk of adverse health effects.

    Exposure to high manganese concentrations primarily causes nervous system effects (ATSDR, 1991). Chronic exposure to drinking water contaminated with manganese at the highest concentrations found in groundwater monitoring wells could pose a high risk of adverse health effects.

    Effects on the gastrointestinal tract (cramps, diarrhea, nausea) have been observed following ingestion of large amounts of vanadium (ATSDR, 1992b). Chronic exposure to drinking water contaminated with vanadium at the highest concentrations found in groundwater monitoring wells could pose a low risk of adverse health effects.

    The main health concern about sodium ingestion is its association with high blood pressure and possibly heart disease (WHO, 1984). Chronic exposure to drinking water contaminated with sodium at the highest concentrations found in groundwater monitoring wells could pose a low risk of adverse health effects.

  3. Potential ingestion, dermal contact and inhalation exposure to contaminated sediments in Perplexity Creek and the Unnamed Tributary.

    In the past, it is possible that workers at the Rosen Brothers site, as well as trespassers, were exposed to contaminated sediments in Perplexity Creek and the unnamed tributary which border the site. The contaminants selected for further evaluation in on-site sediments (see Tables 1 and 6) are the carcinogenic PAH chrysene, arsenic, lead and antimony. The toxicological properties of the carcinogenic PAHs as well as arsenic and lead have already been discussed. Antimony can cause alterations in blood chemistry (ATSDR, 1992a). Based on the low potential for exposure, it is estimated that worker and trespasser exposure to chrysene and arsenic in on-site sediments could pose a very low to low increased risk of cancer. Furthermore, the risks of noncarcinogenic effects from possible exposure to these two contaminants, as well as lead, could be minimal, whereas the noncarcinogenic risk from possible exposure to antimony could be low to moderate.

    Although it is unlikely, people could be exposed to off-site sediments contaminated with carcinogenic PAHs at levels as high as 11 mg/kg. Such exposures would most likely be infrequent and for short periods of time. Based on the low potential for exposure, it is estimated that exposure to PAHs in off-site sediment could pose a very low to low increased risk of cancer. In addition, the risk of noncarcinogenic effects from this exposure could be minimal.

  4. Potential ingestion, dermal contact and inhalation exposure to contaminants in off-site surface soils at nearby industrial areas.

    Potential exposure to off-site surface soils in industrial areas north and east of the site, contaminated with PAHs at concentrations as high as 76 mg/kg, could pose a low level of increased cancer risk to employees. The risk of noncarcinogenic adverse effects would be minimal.

B. Health Outcome Data Evaluation

Evaluation of health outcome data may present a general picture of the health of a community and may confirm the presence of adverse health outcomes. However, elevated rates of a particular disease may not be due to hazardous substances in the environment. Similarly, a contaminant may still have caused adverse health effects even if elevated rates are not found. Pre-existing health outcome data are usually reported for much larger population units, such as counties, than are likely to be affected by the contaminants associated with a particular site. Any evidence of adverse health effects on the smaller population may be hidden within the larger population. Also, when populations are small, the number of people who have a particular adverse health effect is also small. Small changes in the number of affected people from year to year can cause a large change in the rate, so the rate is considered "unstable." For those reasons, health outcome data must be evaluated with caution.

In 1982, the NYS DOH reviewed leukemia incidence and mortality in the City of Cortland for the period 1970-1979. No statistically significant excesses were found in comparison with expected numbers based on leukemia incidence and mortality rates for Upstate New York.

In May of 1991, the NYS DOH completed a study of newly diagnosed cancer cases in the City of Cortland for the years 1978-1987. The observed number of cancer cases was determined from the New York State Cancer Registry and compared to the expected number calculated based on age, sex and population density. The total number of observed cancer cases did not show a statistically significant difference from the expected number of cancer cases for males or females. An examination of the individual cancer sites did show a significant excess of prostate cancer in males (84 cases observed, 62 cases expected). This was the only type of cancer showing a statistically significant excess. Prostate cancer is a common type of cancer found in older males. In the City of Cortland, more cases were reported during 1983-1987 than during 1978-1982, which is consistent with increases in prostate cancer incidence in recent years both in New York State and nationally. The stage at which the prostate cancer cases was detected was reviewed. When a comparison was made with staging information for prostate cancer cases in New York State (exclusive of New York City) for the same time period, there were more cases in Cortland identified at the very earliest stage and fewer cases at the most advanced stage of disease. This suggests that the excess of prostate cancer cases might be due in part to a higher level of prostate cancer screening activity in the area.

C. Community Health Concerns Evaluation

In response to community health concerns about cancer, the NYS DOH reviewed leukemia incidences and mortality in the City of Cortland for the period 1970-1979. In 1991, the NYS DOH completed a study of cancer incidence in the City of Cortland for the period 1978-1987. The results of both of these studies have been discussed in subsection B (Health Outcome Data Evaluation) of this Public Health Implications section of this PHA. In response to CURB's request that a health assessment be completed for the site, this PHA has been developed for the Rosen Brothers site.

In response to other community concerns about the site, the NYS DOH coordinated a public meeting which was held on January 10, 1990. Representatives of the citizens action group, CURB, were also present. The participating agencies included the US EPA, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYS DEC), the NYS DOH and the Cortland County Health Department (CCHD). The purpose of the meeting was to clarify the various agency roles, summarize the status of the site in terms of investigation and remediation, answer questions and determine the nature of the concerns of nearby residents. No community health concerns related to the Rosen Brothers site were expressed by citizens at this public meeting.

No additional information about past community concerns regarding the cancer study completed by the NYS DOH has been obtained. The current status of the independent health survey initiated by CURB in 1992 is unknown.

The US EPA has met with representatives of CURB and other community members on numerous occasions during the course of investigations at the Rosen Brothers site. The purpose of these meetings was to provide the community with updated information about the site, provide the public with a clear explanation of technical issues related to the site and maintain an open dialogue with the community. There are no known new community health concerns about the site.



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