EAST ST. LOUIS, ST. CLAIR COUNTY, ILLINOIS
The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is conducting a health consultation as a State Initial Site Evaluation (SISE) for this site at the request of the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA). On September 21, 1993, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) requested IEPA conduct an assessment of the Certain-teed Corporation site in East St. Louis, Illinois. As part of that process, IEPA requested IDPH to evaluate the site to determine if it poses a public health threat.
The Certain-teed Corporation site was placed on the Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Information System (CERCLIS) list on July 20, 1992. The site was placed on the list because of the potential for chemical substances related to the asphalt shingle manufacturing process to enter the environment and potentially endanger the health of nearby residents. Some materials used in the site are hazardous substances. The facility operated prior to establishment of environmental laws regulating releases of hazardous substances into the environment, and the location of the residents across the street from the facility may have put those people at risk of exposure to substances that may have been released into the environment.
The Certain-teed Corporation facility is at 1700 Broadway in East St. Louis, Illinois (Figure 1). It covers 2 square blocks (approximately 14 acres) and is bordered by 16th Street to the west, Broadway to the north, 18th Street to the east, and railroad tracks to the south (Figure 2). The site is now divided into four parts. The largest section of the Certain-teed site is owned by the John Corder Equipment Company of St. Louis, Missouri, and consists of approximately 11 acres (Figure 2). United Packaging occupies approximately 1 acre in the southeast corner of the site. The other 2 sections consist of approximately 2 acres. Residential areas are along Broadway across from the site.
The Certain-teed Corporation's East St. Louis facility began operation in 1904 and operated for more than 70 years. The facility closed in 1980. The facility purchased rolls of petroleum asphalt roofing paper and shingles, dry felt paper, and some cements and coatings. Photographs from 1950 showed that two 500,000 gallon asphalt tanks were present at the facility. The facility consisted of more than 20 buildings.
In 1981, the John Corder Equipment Company purchased most of the property. The owner of the company said that all above ground and below ground tanks were removed before 1982 except a large water tank which is in the southeast corner of the facility. In October 1987, United Packaging Corporation purchased approximately 1 acre from the John Corder Equipment Company. United Packaging employs six people, while the John Corder Company employs two people at the East St. Louis location.
A chain-link fence limits access to the site. IDPH personnel conducted a site inspection on June 26, 1997, and identified several breaches in the integrity of the fence. The site was heavily vegetated. IEPA staff said that access to the site can be gained through the entrance to the John Corder Equipment Company and United Packaging. Several locations throughout the site have hard tar on the surface. Employees at the United Packaging facility have observed tar seeping to the surface during the summer in the old tank storage area.
IEPA collected twelve soil samples on April 5 and 6, 1994. The sampling locations are shown in Figure 3, and a brief description of each sample collected and the sampling location are given in Attachment 1. All twelve samples were taken from the top 6 inches of soil. Sample X101 was a background sample taken from Lincoln Park. Sample X109 is a duplicate sample for X108. Samples X102-X109 were taken on the site, while samples X110-X112 were taken from the residential area across Broadway. The soil samples were analyzed to determine the level of USEPA Target Compound List (TCL) Compounds present in and around the site.
A summary of the TCL contaminants detected in the samples is given in Table 1. Samples contained volatile and semi-volatile organic compounds, pesticides, and inorganic compounds. As expected, due to the nature of the operation and its use of asphalt, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) were present in all samples. The samples that appear to have the highest concentrations of site-related contaminants are X102, X104 - X107, X110, and X111.
IEPA conducted no air monitoring during their site investigation and did not collect surface water samples near the site. The Mississippi River is approximately 1.5 miles west of the site and is the nearest large surface water body. No groundwater samples were taken during the site investigation. All residents near the site use municipal water. No residential wells were found near the site during the investigation; however, some wells may exist because the water table is high and the soil can easily facilitate simple well construction.