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PETITIONED PUBLIC HEALTH ASSESSMENT

METRO GAS STATION
FLANDERS, SUFFOLK COUNTY, NEW YORK


APPENDIX A: SITE MAP AND DEMOGRAPHICS

Demographic Statistics
Figure 1. Demographic Statistics


APPENDIX B: GROUNDWATER PLUME MAP

Metro Gas Station MtBE Plume
Figure 2. Metro Gas Station MtBE Plume


APPENDIX C: PRIVATE WELL MONITORING RESULTS

Table 1: Concentration Range of Private Well Monitoring Results

Contaminant Sampling Year 1993
ppb
Sampling Year 1994
ppb
Sampling Year 1995
ppb
Sampling Year 1996
ppb
Sampling Year 1997
ppb
Sampling Year 1998
ppb
Comparison Value
Value ppb Source
Methyl-Tertiary-Butyl Ether ND - 120 ND - 18 ND - 10 ND ND - 3 ND 3000 IEMEG
Benzene ND - 2 ND ND ND ND ND 1 CREG
Ethylbenzene ND ND ND ND ND ND 1000 RMEG
Toluene ND ND ND ND ND ND 200 IEMEG
Xylene ND - 3 ND ND ND ND ND 2000 IEMEG
1-Methethylbenzene ND - 2 ND ND ND ND ND 1300 RBC
Tetramethylbenzene ND - 2 ND ND ND ND ND 5 MCL
1,1,1-Trichloroethane ND - 30 ND ND ND ND ND 790 RBC


Table 2: Metro Gas Station Private Well Monitoring Results

Contaminant Sampling Year 1993
ppb
Sampling Year 1994
ppb
Sampling Year 1995
ppb
Sampling Year 1996
ppb
Sampling Year 1997
ppb
Sampling Year 1998
ppb
Comparison Value
Value ppb Source
Benzene 30 No Sample No Sample No Sample ND Sample Collected, Not Analyzed 5 MCL
Ethylbenzene 550       ND   1000 RMEG
Toluene 810       ND   750 RBC
Xylene 3,700       ND   12,000 RBC
1, 2-Dibromoethane 0.12       ND   0.05 MCL
1,3,5 Trimethylbenzene 250       ND   300 RBC
1,2,4- Trimethylbenzene 910       ND   300 RBC
1 Methylethylbenzene 39       ND   1300 RBC
n-Propylbenzene 110       ND   61 RBC
sec-Butylbenzene 5       ND   61 RBC
Tetramethylbenzene 34       ND   5 MCL
Zinc ND       7,400   11,000 RBC
CREG = Cancer Risk Evaluation Guides, EMEG = Environmental Media Evaluation Guides, IEMEG = Intermediate Environmental Media Evaluation Guides, MCL = Maximum Contaminant Level, MRL = Minimal Risk Level, ND = Not Detected, RMEG = Reference Dose Media Evaluation Guide, RBC = Risk-Based Concentration, ppb = parts per billion


APPENDIX D: DESCRIPTION OF CHEMICALS DETECTED IN PRIVATE WELLS

The following information about the fuel-related chemicals detected in private well water is from ATSDR Toxicological Profiles:

Methyl Tertiary Butyl Ether
Methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) is a colorless liquid with a distinctive odor that most people find disagreeable. It is added to gasoline to get better engine performance and to reduce exhaust emissions. MTBE gets into the groundwater from gasoline spills or leaking storage tanks and is often the first chemical to be detected from a gasoline spill. When gasoline with MTBE enters groundwater, the MTBE moves faster than other gasoline components because it is more water-soluble. In animals, exposure to air contaminated with MTBE can damage the nervous system. The health effects that might occur in humans following long-term exposure to water contaminated with MTBE are not known. In general, the higher the level of exposure and the longer the exposure to MTBE, the greater the chance for adverse health effects.

Benzene
Benzene is a colorless liquid with a sweet odor. Benzene evaporates into air quickly and dissolves slightly in water. Benzene is commonly found in water, soil, and air as a result in natural processes and human activities. Benzene is made mostly from petroleum sources. Most people are exposed to a small amount of benzene on a daily basis from breathing air. After exposure to benzene, several factors determine whether harmful health effects will occur and if they do, what type and severity of these health effects might be. These factors include the amount of benzene to which an individual is exposed and the length of time of the exposure. Most data involving effects of long-term exposure to benzene are from studies of workers employed in industries that make or use benzene. The health effects that might occur in humans following long-term exposure to water contaminated with benzene are not known. In animals, exposure to food or water contaminated with benzene can damage blood and the immune system and can even cause cancer at high levels.

Toluene
Toluene is a colorless liquid with a distinctive, sweet smell. It is primarily man-made and used as a gasoline additive. Studies of workers and animals exposed to toluene do not indicate that toluene causes cancer. After exposure to toluene, several factors determine whether harmful health effects will occur and if they do, what type and severity of these health effects might be. These factors include the amount of toluene to which you are exposed and the length of time of the exposure.

Xylene
Xylene is a colorless liquid with a sweet odor produced from petroleum industries. Although most xylene is primarily a man-made, the chemical occurs naturally in petroleum and coal tars and is formed during forest fires. There are three forms of xylene that usually occur as a mixture along with other chemicals, such as ethylbenzene. Xylene is a liquid, and it can leak into soil, surface water, or groundwater, where it may remain for 6 months or longer before it is broken down into other chemicals. Information from animal studies is not adequate to determine whether or not xylene causes cancer in humans. Xylene or chemical mixtures containing xylene are deadly to humans if large enough quantities are inhaled or swallowed. The higher the level of exposure and the longer the time of exposure to xylene, the greater the chance for adverse health effects.

Trichloroethylene
Trichloroethylene (TCE) is a colorless liquid with a sweet odor and a sweet burning taste. TCE is used primarily as a solvent to remove grease from metal parts. The largest source of TCE in the environment is from factories that use it to remove grease from metals. TCE evaporates easily in the air but can stay in soil and groundwater for long periods of time because evaporation does not readily take place. TCE has been shown to be toxic to animals and is probably toxic to humans. The higher the level of exposure and the longer the time of exposure to TCE, the greater the chance for adverse health effects.

Trichloroethane
Trichloroehtane (TCA) is a colorless man-made liquid that does not occur naturally in the environment. TCA is used primarily as a solvent to remove grease from metal parts. TCA is commonly found in ambient air and can be carried by water through soil into the groundwater. Once there, it may be broken down by naturally occurring organisms, which take 200 to 300 days to remove half of the chemical. There are no studies in humans that can tell whether health effects will occur if an individual were to drink water contaminated with TCA. However, swallowing large amounts of TCA caused liver damage and death in animals. The higher the level of exposure and the longer the time of the exposure to TCA, the greater the chance for adverse health effects.


APPENDIX E: ADDITIONAL COMMUNITY CONCERNS EVALUATION

Additional health concerns were mentioned by Bay View Pines residents during the public meeting with ATSDR in July 1998. In the following section, ATSDR addressed each concern:

  1. A perceived high incidence of cancer and heart disease in the community is thought to be due to the groundwater contamination caused by the gas spill.
  2. According to the community health survey results that were evaluated by the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) and ATSDR records of conversations with residents in the area, the cancer and heart disease incidence in the Bay View Pines community may not be unusual. Benzene, a compound found in gasoline is a human carcinogen that may cause leukemia. However, leukemia from benzene exposure has been found only in occupational workers exposed to very high levels of benzene. Leukemia is not linked to exposure of low levels of benzene. Heart disease is not a reportable disease in the state of New York, so incidence data for the community are not available. No contaminants identified in the private wells have been linked to heart disease.

    An epidemiology study performed by the Brookhaven National Laboratory Environmental Task Force evaluated the cancer incidence in Suffolk County from 1988-1993. This study concluded that the breast cancer rate for the east end of Suffolk County is elevated. The study also indicated that although environmental exposures can contribute to elevated cancer rates, some demographic or population dynamic factors can also lead to high rates which could explain the high rate for the east end of the study area. The chemical compounds found in the groundwater of the Bay View Pines community in Flanders (xylene and MTBE) are not associated with breast cancer.

    The time frame of possible exposure to all fuel-related chemicals detected in private wells was a maximum of 4 years. Health guidelines, occupational exposure studies, and laboratory animal studies that describe adverse health effects are based on evaluating health effects of individuals exposed from 30 to 70 years (or equivalent in animals). Therefore, ATSDR could not link the incidences of cancer and heart disease with the gasoline spill based on the low levels of contaminants detected in private wells and the short time frame of possible exposure.

  3. Several residents in the Bay View Pines community want to know why their private wells are not being tested periodically.
  4. In 1993 SCDHS and NYSDEC sampled approximately 38 private wells along Dale Avenue, Elm Avenue, Long Neck Boulevard, and Cedar Avenue. The results of this sampling effort revealed the location of the groundwater contaminant plume. Based on the location of the groundwater contamination plume, only the private wells along Long Neck Boulevard, Cedar Avenue and Dale Avenue are periodically sampled. These wells are sampled because they are located near or in the groundwater contaminant plume. SCDHS recommends that houses outside the potential plume migration path should have their private wells tested every two years or connect to the public water supply.

    The private wells located farther north of Dale Avenue did not show any traces of xylene or MTBE. An independent study released by a private contractor for the Metro Gas Station in 1998 also described the location and delineation of the groundwater contaminant plume and reported that groundwater flow was toward the east-southeast. In 1994 through 1998, other private wells were tested along Elm Avenue, Birch Avenue, King Avenue, Hart Avenue, and Fern Avenue. There was no indication of the presence of VOCs in any of the well samples.

  5. The residents near the gas station were concerned about the stripping tower and a smell gasoline when the tower is not operating.
  6. The remedial system installed by a private contractor uses a stripping tower and a vapor filtering system. The vapor filtering system operates independently of the tower and is continuously operating. NYSDEC obtains monitoring results from the Metro Gas Station quarterly and the remedial system is meeting the requirements stipulated by the NYSDEC. The emissions have been monitored by the Metro Gas Station's private contractors and evaluated by NYSDEC. Residents may occasionally smell gasoline odors, however, the air emissions meet New York air quality standards and are not a threat to human health.

  7. Residents were concerned about the disposal of the soil that was contaminated when the gas spill occurred.
  8. There are no records of contaminated soil being disposed of; however, soil remediation is currently being done using the soil vapor extraction (SVE) method. SCDHS inspected the underground storage tanks (USTs) at the Metro Gas Station in 1987. The USTs passed the inspection. On January 6, 1992 two steel tanks were removed and replaced by two new tanks. There were no signs of a gasoline spill, tank leak, or vapors in the soil around the tanks. Later in 1992, the gas spill was discovered when a neighbor complained about gas vapors in his basement. NYSDEC installed a venting system in the basement. In April 1994, NYSDEC evaluated the results of a soil gas survey and determined the exact location of contaminated soil. Once the contaminated soil was located, soil samples were taken and analyzed to verify the extent of contamination. No soil samples were taken after the sampling in 1994.

  9. Residents want to know if the cancer and heart disease incidence in the community is abnormal and what agency will perform a health study.
  10. ATSDR reviewed an epidemiology study done by the Brookhaven National Laboratory Environmental Task Force that evaluated the incidence of eleven different types of cancer in Suffolk County. Other than breast cancer, the conclusions of the study show no abnormal incidence of cancer (refer to the Health Outcome Data section of this document). Health education materials about breast cancer are available to the public from NYSDOH. Also, the VOCs detected in the private wells are not associated with heart disease or breast cancer. A health study is not recommended.

  11. Residents living near the bay were concerned about whether the potential for salt water intrusion from the Peconic Bay that may be contaminated.
  12. According to the hydrogeologist at SCDHS, the groundwater flow on the coastline of Peconic Bay is toward the bay and salt water intrusion into private wells is unlikely. Sampling results from private wells near the coast in the peninsula show normal concentrations of sodium and chloride (the constituents of salt water). High concentrations of sodium and chloride are indicators of salt water intrusion. Salt water intrusion is not an environmental problem in the Bay View Pines community, however, storm tides may cause salting of the wells from above the aquifer.

  13. There were concerns regarding four other sites as possible sources of groundwater contamination for the Bay View Pines community: Riverhead Sewage Treatment Plant, Lebanon Chemical Plant, Riverhead Golf Course, and Brookhaven National Laboratory.
  14. Riverhead Sewage Treatment Plant: The Riverhead Sewage Treatment Plant is currently operating as a secondary treatment plant using trickling filters to treat sewage. Plans are being processed to upgrade the system to a tertiary treatment (which involves nitrogen removal) by installing sequence batch reactor equipment. The sewage plant discharges effluent into the Sawmill Creek and the discharge water is monitored weekly. Due to the distance between the discharge location and the Bay View Pines community, ATSDR does not believe the Riverhead Sewage Treatment Plant represents a public health concern associated with groundwater contamination and the Bay View Pines community.

    Lebanon Chemical Plant: The Lebanon Chemical Plant is located in South Jamesport and is currently closed. The plant was used for storage of pesticides and fertilizers. In 1994, the location was inspected by SCDHS and no stored chemicals were found. There was a fire in the facility a couple of years ago. In 1997 SCDHS sampled 10 private wells down-gradient from the plant. Pesticides, metals and VOCs were within drinking water standards. This area is primarily served by municipal water. Due to the distance between the chemical plant and the Bay View Pines Community and lack of chemicals being transported to Flanders, ATSDR does not believe the Lebanon Chemical Plant would have an impact on the Bay View Pines groundwater.

    Riverhead Indian Island Golf Course: The Riverhead Golf Course is located north of the Peconic River and is adjacent to the intersection of Riverside Drive and Highway 105. In 1997, SCDHS monitored 4 different private wells near the golf course. The results of the sampling did not indicate the presence of pesticides, metals, or VOCs.

    Brookhaven National Laboratory: In 1997 ATSDR released a Public Health Consultation about Brookhaven National Laboratory. The community is mainly concerned about possible health effects due to the groundwater contamination with VOCs, pesticides, and some radionuclides detected on- and off-site. The groundwater contamination plume migrated to the community located south of the site. Due to the extent of the contamination, most residences were connected to the municipal water supply. Brookhaven National Laboratory is currently remediating the site and periodically samples the monitoring wells. This site is located approximately 12 miles west of the Bay View Pines community. Groundwater contamination related to Brookhaven National Laboratory does not present a public health threat to the Bay View Pines community due to the distance from the community to the site. The contaminated groundwater near Brookhaven National Laboratory has not impacted the private wells in the Bay View Pines community.

  15. Residents expressed concerns about previous gas spills in the area.
  16. According to the records of the NYSDEC, no gasoline spills have been reported near the Bay View Pines community with the exception of the Metro Gas Station. Other gasoline spills have occurred in the past in Suffolk County but cannot be identified as possible sources of groundwater contamination to the Bay View Pines community.

  17. Some residents expressed concern about high concentrations of iron in their private wells.
  18. The levels of iron in private wells were 11 times below ATSDR CV (see Appendix E). No health effects are expected to occur from exposure to iron from private wells in Bay View Pines. The iron in private well water is probably naturally occurring and related to the background geology of the area. The presence of iron in drinking water can affect taste and the aesthetic quality of the water.

  19. Residents were concerned about exposure to contaminated water from the Peconic River during floods.
  20. ATSDR cannot evaluate this concern because there are no sampling data from flooding events that occurred three years ago. In the future, the houses near the shoreline that have Bay water inundate the top of their well casing should boil drinking water for 10 minutes to eliminate possible biologic contamination. Salt would be tasted in the drinking water if contamination from Bay water occurred. Drinking water samples should be taken as soon as possible after a flooding event to determine if chemical contaminants migrated into private well water. Homes using municipal water would not have this as a concern.


DOCUMENTS REVIEWED FOR THE EVALUATION OF ADDITIONAL COMMUNITY CONCERNS

ATSDR. December 16, 1993. Public Health Assessment for Rowe Industries Groundwater Contamination. Atlanta, GA 30333.

ATSDR. October 14, 1997. Health Consultation for Brookhaven National Laboratory. Atlanta, GA 30333.

Bay View Pines Community Health Survey. 1998.

Fanning, Phillips, and Molnar, Inc. January 1997. Site Investigation for the Metro Gas Station. Ronkonkoma, NY 11779

Grimson, Roger and Dawn Triche. January 26, 1998. Evaluation of Allegations of Contamination and Risk Associated with the Operation of Brookhaven National Laboratory. The Brookhaven National Laboratory Environmental Task Force.

R.F. Weston, Inc. August 1989. Groundwater Quality Study for Lebanon Chemical Corporation.

Suffolk County Department of Health Services. 1998. Indian Island Golf Club (Riverhead Golf Course) Monitoring Well Results.

Suffolk County Department of Health Services. August 10, 1998. Riverhead Town Sewage Treatment Plant: Water Quality Analyses and Discharge Monitoring Reports.


APPENDIX F: EVALUATION OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONTAMINATION AND POTENTIAL EXPOSURES PATHWAYS METHODOLOGY

Quality Assurance

In preparing this report, ATSDR relied on the information provided in the referenced documents and by contacts with the Suffolk County Department of Health Services (SCDHS), the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC), community members, and the Metro Gas Station. ATSDR assumes that adequate quality assurance and control measures were taken during chain-of-custody, laboratory procedures, and data reporting. The validity of the analyses and conclusions drawn in this document are determined by the availability and reliability of the information.

Human Exposure Pathway Evaluation and the use of ATSDR Comparison Values

ATSDR assesses a site by evaluating the level of exposure in potential or completed exposure pathways. An exposure pathway is the way chemicals may enter a person's body to cause a health effect. It includes all the steps between the release of a chemical and the population exposed: (1) a chemical release source, (2) chemical movement, (3) a place where people can come into contact with the chemical, (4) a route of human exposure, and (5) a population that could be exposed. In this assessment, ATSDR evaluates chemicals that may be contacted by people living in nearby Metro Gas Station.

Data evaluators use comparison values (CVs), which are screening tools used to evaluate environmental data that is relevant to the exposure pathways. Comparison values are concentrations of contaminants that are considered to be safe levels of exposure. Comparison values used in this document include ATSDR environmental media evaluation guide (EMEG) and cancer risk evaluation guide (CREG). Comparison values are derived from available health guidelines, such as ATSDR minimal risk levels and EPA's cancer slope factor.

The derivation of a comparison value uses conservative exposure assumptions, resulting in values that are much lower than exposure concentrations observed to cause adverse health effects; thus, insuring the comparison values are protective of public health in essentially all exposure situations. That is, if the concentrations in the exposure medium are less than the CV, the exposures are not of health concern and no further analysis of the pathway is required. However, while concentrations below the comparison value are not expected to lead to any observable health effect, it should not be inferred that a concentration greater than the comparison value will necessarily lead to adverse effects. Depending on site-specific environmental exposure factors (for example, duration of exposure) and activities of people that result in exposure (time spent in area of contamination), exposure to levels above the comparison value may or may not lead to a health effect. Therefore, ATSDR comparison values are not used to predict the occurrence of adverse health effects.

The comparison values used in this evaluation are defined as follows: The CREG is a concentration at which excess cancer risk is not likely to exceed one case of cancer in a million persons exposed over a lifetime. The CREG is a very conservative CV that is used to estimate cancer risk. Exposure to a concentration equal to or less than the CREG is defined as an insignificant risk and is an acceptable level of exposure over a lifetime. The risk from exposure is not considered as a significant risk unless the exposure concentration is approximately 10 times the CREG and exposure occurs over several years. The EMEG is a concentration at which daily exposure for a lifetime is unlikely to result in adverse noncancerous effects.

Selecting Contaminants of Concern

Contaminants of concern (COCs) are the site-specific chemical substances that the health assessor selects for further evaluation of potential health effects. Identifying contaminants of concern is a process that requires the assessor to examine contaminant concentrations at the site, the quality of environmental sampling data, and the potential for human exposure. A thorough review of each of these issues is required to accurately select COCs in the site-specific human exposure pathway. The following text describes the selection process.

In the first step of the COC selection process, the maximum contaminant concentrations are compared directly to health comparison values. ATSDR considers site-specific exposure factors to ensure selection of appropriate health comparison values. If the maximum concentration reported for a chemical was less than the health comparison value, ATSDR concluded that exposure to that chemical was not of public health concern; therefore, no further data review was required for that chemical. However, if the maximum concentration was greater than the health comparison value, the chemical was selected for additional data review. In addition, any chemicals detected that did not have relevant health comparison values were also selected for additional data review.

Comparison values have not been developed for some contaminants, and, based on new scientific information other comparison values may be determined to be inappropriate for the specific type of exposure. In those cases, the contaminants are included as contaminants of concern if current scientific information indicates exposure to those contaminants may be of public health concern.

The next step of the process requires a more in-depth review of data for each of the contaminants selected. Factors used in the selection of the COCs included the number of samples with detections above the minimum detection limit, the number of samples with detections above an acute or chronic health comparison value, and the potential for exposure at the monitoring location.


APPENDIX G: ABBREVIATIONS AND ACRONYMS

Listed and described below are the various comparison values that ATSDR uses to select chemicals for further evaluation, as well as other non-ATSDR values that are sometimes used to put environmental concentrations into a meaningful frame of reference. Also listed below are the abbreviations for some of the more common units of measure.

CREG = Cancer Risk Evaluation Guides
MRL = Minimal Risk Level
EMEG = Environmental Media Evaluation Guides
IEMEG = Intermediate Environmental Media Evaluation Guides
RMEG = Reference Dose Media Evaluation Guide
RBC = Risk-Based Concentration
MCL = Maximum Contaminant Level
ppm = parts per million (mg/L water or mg/kg soil)
ppb = parts per billion (µg/L water or µg/kg soil)

Cancer Risk Evaluation Guides (CREGs) are estimated contaminant concentrations expected to cause no more than one excess cancer in a million persons exposed over a lifetime. CREGs are calculated from EPA cancer slope factors or cancer potency factors using default values for exposure rates. However, CREGs cannot be used to make realistic predictions of cancer risk. The true risk is always unknown and may be as low as zero.

Environmental Media Evaluation Guides (EMEGs) are concentrations that are calculated from ATSDR minimal risk levels by factoring in default body weights and ingestion rates.

Intermediate Environmental Media Evaluation Guides (IEMEG) are calculated from ATSDR minimal risk levels; they factor in body weight and ingestion rates for intermediate exposures (i.e., those occurring for more than 14 days and less than 1 year).

Reference Dose Media Evaluation Guide (RMEG) is the concentration of a contaminant in air, water or soil that corresponds to EPA RfD for that contaminant when default values for body weight and intake rates are taken into account.

Risk-Based Concentrations (RBC) are media-specific concentrations derived by Region III of the Environmental Protection Agency Region III from RfDs, RfCs, or EPA cancer slope factors. They represent concentrations of a contaminant in tap water, ambient air, fish, or soil (industrial or residential) that are considered unlikely to cause adverse health effects over a lifetime of chronic exposure.

Maximum Contaminant Levels (MCLs) represent contaminant concentrations in drinking water that EPA deems protective of public health (considering the availability and economics of water treatment technology) over a lifetime (70 years) at an exposure rate of 2 liters of water per day.


APPENDIX H: PUBLIC COMMENTS

This appendix contains the comments received during the public comment period for Metro Gas Station and ATSDR's response to those comments. The comments have been numbered and are in italic with the response directly below each comment.

  1. Other than the meeting held last July 1998, no further "investigative" health effect information seems to have been evaluated from the affected community.

ATSDR examined all relevant exposure pathways, time frame of potential exposure, and the concentrations of chemicals detected in each medium (air, groundwater, etc.). Cancer incidence was also examined in the census tract that contains Bay View Pines. There were no exposures to hazardous chemicals for relevant time frames that warranted further health investigations. Cancer incidence was not elevated in this census tract.

  1. It is our understanding that the plume from Metro has been characterized, delineated and is now being done with venting to the air. NYDEC has stated that the vapor release is within air guidance values. Yet the number one chronic cause of illness among children in this country, according to the American Lung Association, is asthma. The rates of chronic asthma have not been evaluated in this country.

There are several known and unknown factors contributing to this increase of incidence in asthma throughout the United States. However, NYDEC has confirmed that the air stripping towers at Metro Gas Station are currently operating within New York guidelines. ATSDR evaluated the influent and effluent from the air stripper and estimated the concentrations of fuel related chemical being emitted from the air stripper. The estimated ambient air emissions from the stripper are below the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) risk-based comparison values (values that estimate the possibility noncarcinogenic health effects, including asthma).

  1. The years spent, from approximately 1989, in the exposure pathways of this spill are considered of "no health effect related value" according to this report. Yes, we understand the tables of risk based assessment values and "CV" levels, however, we feel the daily lifestyle of possible or probable exposure. We also believe these values will change as analytical testing becomes more sensitive, technology moves forward, and risk assessment becomes more finely tuned.

Based on current scientific knowledge of chemical toxicity and exposure pathways, ATSDR does not expect any health effects to result from the known exposures to contaminated groundwater from the gasoline spill at Metro Gas Station.

  1. The documents referenced for this evaluation, we challenge. Many of them are not relevant to "good scientific" information and most are arbitrary letters based on upon an individual's summary of the overall condition of our community. How many physicians in our community were interviewed for this document to input a rationale of positive or negative influx of health conditions in the area? Were the area hospitals even asked to give input?

ATSDR uses all the information available about a site during an evaluation. This includes (but is not limited to) physical site conditions, sampling methods, chemical concentrations, community concerns and records, conversations with field professionals or experts, technical site reports, and disease incidence reports (if available). If site conditions or chemical exposures related to a site are or are suspected to be hazardous to public health, ATSDR initiates further investigations into medical records and/or physician consultations with permission of the patient(s).The contamination resulting from the gasoline spill at Metro Gas Station did not result in a threat to the public health based on what is known about the magnitude and length of exposure. Therefore, physicians and hospital staff were not contacted during the evaluation process for this public health assessment.

  1. In your report you reference in the demographics section, "In 1990 there were 229 females of reproductive age (15-44 years) in the area." We question how many of the younger group may have infertility problems in the coming years, more and more we are noticing this as a growing conversational topic in the general area.

Fertility problems are not expected to occur because of the gasoline leak at Metro Gas Station.

  1. The community questioned the site known as BNL for any intrusion into the health effects of this community. The document from the Suffolk County Task Force was used for review as a scientific source or reference. It is not such a document and the site itself has other documentation that could have been reviewed and more supportive.

ATSDR has been involved in extensive site activities at Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL). It is a separate site from Metro Gas Station and was evaluated separately. BNL activities were summarized (along with three other nearby sites) in Appendix D of the Metro Gas Station public health assessment as a public request during the July 1998 public meeting.

  1. The community questioned the site known as Lebanon Chemical Facility and the more recent study from the Maguire Group done in May of 1993 recommending a complete Phase II study be done of the site was ignored. The Weston Report never sampled to investigate pesticides or "sister" compounds.

According to Suffolk County Department of Health Services, groundwater sampled from private wells near the Lebanon Chemical Facility did not contain pesticides above drinking water standards.

  1. The east/southeast reported direction of water flow we feel is a generalized statement and the USGS groundwater flow maps indicating the groundwater flow is north/northeast and should have been evaluated and attached to this report for clarity.

ATSDR verified with Suffolk County Department of Health Services that north/northeast is indeed the correct groundwater flow direction in the vicinity of Metro Gas Station. This has been corrected in the public health assessment.

  1. Could the spill that occurred and the years of exposure from any of the pathways added to the health effects of the community?

ATSDR not think this is probable. We closely evaluated each chemical detected in nearby private wells, all of the possible pathways (or routes) of exposure, the length of time of exposure, and cancer incidence within the census tracts of Bay View Pines (and surrounding communities). Based on these evaluations, there is no evidence supporting that the groundwater contamination from the gasoline leak at Metro Gas Station caused or contributed to cancer incidence or any adverse health effects to individuals who may have been exposed.



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