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HEALTH CONSULTATION

OLEAN WELL FIELD
OLEAN, CATTARAUGUS COUNTY, NEW YORK


CONCLUSIONS

Based on ATSDR's public health hazard categories (Appendix C) the Olean Well Field site continues to be a public health hazard because of past and ongoing exposures to trichloroethene in drinking water at levels that pose a risk of causing adverse health effects. Several private drinking water supplies within the region of the groundwater contaminant plume were sampled as recommended in the SRU. Three of the private wells continue to be contaminated with trichloroethene at levels above NYS DOH's drinking water standard. However, the homeowners whose wells contain trichloroethene above the NYS DOH's drinking water standard have chosen not to connect to the public water system. They have been provided with educational information on the health risks of exposure to trichloroethene. The levels of trichloroethene in these private water supplies prior to 1981 are not known. Also, as recommended in the SRU, the additional soil gas sampling planned for this site was completed in October, 1994. Follow-up indoor air sampling was done at select homes. The results show that contaminants in the groundwater are not adversely affecting the indoor air of the homes sampled, since the primary groundwater contaminant, trichloroethene, was not detected.


RECOMMENDATIONS

  1. Monitoring of private wells in the region of the groundwater contaminant plume should continue. If additional private drinking water supplies become contaminated with site-related chemicals above the NYS DOH drinking water standards, an alternate water source or treatment should be provided.
  2. Residents who did not connect to the public water supply should do so.
  3. The NYS DOH is developing a registry of people exposed to VOCs in drinking water. People who drank water from the Olean Well Field which contained trichloroethene at levels above NYS DOH's drinking water standard will be considered for inclusion to this registry.

PUBLIC HEALTH ACTION PLAN

The public health action plan (PHAP) for the Olean Well Field site describes actions to be taken by ATSDR and the NYS DOH following completion of this health consultation. Those actions already taken are included in the Background and Statement of Issue section of this health consultation. The purpose of the PHAP is to ensure that this health consultation not only identifies public health hazards, but provides a plan of action designed to mitigate and prevent adverse human health effects resulting from present and/or future exposures to hazardous substances at or near the site. ATSDR and/or the NYS DOH will ensure that this plan is implemented. The public health actions for this site are:

  1. The NYS DOH, with assistance from the CCHD, will periodically sample private wells near the Olean Well Field site and will inform homeowners of the quality of their water.
  2. ATSDR and the NYS DOH will coordinate with the appropriate environmental agencies to implement the recommendations in this health consultation.
  3. The NYS DOH is developing a registry of persons exposed to VOCs in drinking water. Residents who were exposed in the past to VOCs in drinking water at levels above the NYS DOH drinking water standard will be considered for inclusion to this registry.
  4. ATSDR and NYS DOH will provide a follow-up to this health consultation as needed, outlining the actions completed and those in progress. Any follow-up reports will be placed in repositories that contain copies of this health consultation and will be provided to persons who request it.

ATSDR will re-evaluate and expand the Public Health Action Plan when needed. New environmental, toxicological, or health outcome data, or the results of implementing the above proposed actions may determine the need for additional actions at this site.


DOCUMENTS REVIEWED

Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) 1995. Toxicological Profile for Trichloroethene. Update Draft. US Department of Health and Human Services. Atlanta, Georgia. US Public Health Services.

Geraghty and Miller, Inc. 1994. Supplemental Remedial Investigation Report for the Olean Well Field, October.

New York State Department of Health. 1988. Preliminary Health Assessment for the Olean Well Field. Prepared Under a Cooperative Agreement with ATSDR.

New York State Department of Health. 1994. Site Review and Update for the Olean Well Field. Prepared Under a Cooperative Agreement with ATSDR.

US Bureau of the Census. 1990a. Census of population and housing summary tape file 1B. US Department of Commerce. 1991.

US Bureau of the Census. 1990b. Census of population and housing summary tape file 3B. CD-ROM. US Department of Commerce. July 1993.

US Environmental Protection Agency, 1994. Submittal for Assessing Indoor Air Impact Using Soil Gas Data, May 17.

US Environmental Protection Agency, 1995. Indoor Air Risk Analysis, letter from Thomas Taccone to Lani Rafferty, February 27.


SUMMARY OF PUBLIC COMMENTS AND RESPONSES
OLEAN WELL FIELD HEALTH CONSULTATION

The public was invited to review the draft health consultation for the Olean Well Field Site during the public review period which ran from October 8 to November 24, 1997. No responses from the public were received by the NYS DOH. Comments were received from the USEPA and the changes made in the document are detailed below. If you have any questions about this summary, contact the Health Liaison Program at the toll-free number 1-800-458-1158, extension 6402.

  1. Page 4. "Remediation is expected to begin in the year 2000" was changed to read "...by the year 2000."
  2. Page 5 and Page 9. The following paragraph was added to each page "The USEPA used the data to model whether contaminants in the groundwater could be affecting the indoor air of homes above the plume, and concluded that soil gas did not present an unacceptable risk to residents in the selected homes (USEPA 1994, 1995). However, due to uncertainties in some assumptions used in the model, the NYS DOH decided that indoor air of homes should be sampled to give the most accurate representation of indoor air quality."

PREPARERS OF THE REPORT

Lani Rafferty
Public Health Specialist II
Bureau of Environmental Exposure Investigation
New York State Department of Health

and

Joel Kaplan
Research Scientist
Bureau of Toxic Substance Assessment
New York State Department of Health


CERTIFICATION

This Health Consultation was prepared by the Department of Health under a cooperative agreement with the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR). It is in accordance with approved methodology and procedures existing at the time the health consultation was begun.

David Hutchins
Technical Project Officer
Superfund Site Assessment Branch (SSAB)
Division of Health Assessment and Consultation (DHAC)
ATSDR

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

Richard Gillig
Chief, SPS, SSAB, DHAC, ATSDR



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