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PUBLIC HEALTH ASSESSMENT

SOLVENTS RECOVERY SERVICES OF NEW ENGLAND
SOUTHINGTON, HARTFORD COUNTY, CONNECTICUT


DEFINITION AND PURPOSE OF THE PUBLIC HEALTH ASSESSMENT

The purpose and definition of a public health assessment is toevaluate data and information on the release of hazardoussubstances into the environment in order to assess any current orfuture impact on public health, develop health advisories, or otherrecommendations, and to identify studies or actions needed toevaluate and mitigate or prevent human health effects (55 FederalRegister 5136, of Federal Regulations Part 90.)

In addition, this public health assessment was written for theresidents of Southington, Connecticut for their information anduse to identify the public health implications associated withSolvents Recovery of New England (SRSNE.)

The public health assessment will also be utilized by the UnitedStates Environmental Protection Agency as well as other federal,state and local agencies for their information and assessment ofthe site.


ATSDR PUBLIC HEALTH HAZARD CATEGORIES

ATSDR has 5 categories that define the level of the public healthhazard posed by a site. These are:

A: Urgent Public Health Hazard
B: Public Health Hazard
C: Indeterminate Public Health Hazard
D: No Apparent Public Health Hazard
E: No Public Health Hazard

In general, the categories are defined as follows:

CATEGORY A: URGENT PUBLIC HEALTH HAZARD

This category is used for sites that pose an urgent public healthhazard as the result of short-term exposures to hazardoussubstances. The criteria for this category is that evidence existsthat exposures have occurred, are occurring, or are likely to occurin the future. The estimated exposures to the receptor communityare to a substance or substances at concentrations in theenvironment that, upon short-term exposures (less than 1 year), cancause adverse health effects.

CATEGORY B: PUBLIC HEALTH HAZARD:

This category is used for sites that pose a public health hazard asa result of long-term exposures to hazardous substances. The criteria for this category is that evidence exists that exposureshave occurred, are occurring or are likely to occur in the future. The estimated exposures received by the receptor community are toa substance or substances at concentrations in the environmentthat, upon long-term exposures (greater than 1 year), can causeadverse health effects.

CATEGORY C: INDETERMINATE PUBLIC HEALTH HAZARD:

This category is used for sites with incomplete information. Thecriteria for this category is that the limited available data donot indicate that humans are being or have been exposed to levelsof contamination that would be expected to cause adverse healtheffects. In addition, data or information are not available forall environmental media (air, soil or water) to which humans may beexposed. The community-specific health outcome data is eitherinsufficient or does not exist, thus there is no known evidence toindicate that the site has impacted or can impact human health.

CATEGORY D: NO APPARENT PUBLIC HEALTH HAZARD:

This category is used for sites where human exposure tocontaminated media is occurring or has occurred in the past, butthe exposure was or is below a level to cause a health hazard.

CATEGORY E: NO PUBLIC HEALTH HAZARD.

This category is used for sites that do not pose a public healthhazard. The criteria for this category is that there is noevidence of current or past human exposure to contaminated media. Future exposures to contaminated media are not likely to occur.


SUMMARY

Solvents Recovery Services of New England (SRSNE) is a NationalPriority List (NPL) hazardous waste site located in Southington,Connecticut. SRSNE functioned as a hazardous waste treatmentfacility processing waste solvents from l955 until May 1991, whenthe facility closed down all operations permanently. Ground waterand soil, on and off-site have been contaminated with wastesolvents and metals due to improper past disposal practices. Thearea around SRSNE is mainly residential and commercial with someagricultural land and open space to the west and south. Two publicwells located to the south of SRSNE were found to be contaminatedwith volatile organic compounds (VOCs). VOCs were identified abovebackground levels in the late l970's and were taken out of service. According to the Southington Water Department records, wells number 4 and 6 yielded between approximately 6 to 36 percent of thetowns water supply during the years they were in operation (from1966 to 1977, 1980.) In addition, one (1) private well near thesite has been found to be contaminated at levels that exceededMaximum Contaminant levels (MCL.) and this residence is beingconnected to the public water supply. Two (2) other private wellsin the area have been found to contain solvents at levels whichexceed MCLs. However, an investigation by the ConnecticutDepartment of Environmental Protection has determined that thesource of these other contaminants was not SRSNE. The propertieshave been provided with bottled water.

Additional exposures to nearby residents likely occurred due to theincineration of waste sludges on site from l966 until l974. Citizens in the area have expressed concerns about increased ratesof cancer near SRSNE. A preliminary investigation by theConnecticut Department of Health Services (DHS) has found smallage-specific increase in bladder cancers for the entire town.

Based primarily on well documented past exposures that occurredfrom approximately the mid 1960s to 1979, the potential for presentand future exposures this site has been determined to be a public health hazard. Through contaminated ground water used for publicdrinking water a large portion of the town was exposed to siterelated compounds for an undetermined amount of time. In addition,airborne exposures occurred in the past through incineration ofwaste sludges. Currently, potential air exposures may be occurringdue to the air stripping of contaminated ground water. Althoughthe major exposure route (contaminated public wells) has beeneliminated, there is still concern among the residents aboutpotential adverse health effects resulting from the air emissionsgenerated from the groundwater recovery system. Current airemissions generated from the ground water recovery system should beassessed or controlled to assure public health. Residentialprivate wells in the immediate area should be monitored forcontaminations on the fringe of the zone of ground watercontamination emanating from SRSNE. A more detailed investigationinto the increased rate of bladder cancers will be conducted.


BACKGROUND

A. SITE DESCRIPTION AND HISTORY

Solvents Recovery Service of New England, Inc. (SRSNE) is a U.S.Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) designated NationalPriorities List (NPL) site located in the town of Southington,Connecticut, in Hartford County. The 3.7-acre site (Book 164: page54: Southington Tax Assessor Office Records) is located 600 feetSouth of Lazy Lane and immediately adjacent to the Conrail right ofway to the east (Appendix 1). The Quinnipiac River is locatedapproximately 500 feet to the east of the site along the easternedge of the former Cianci property. A drainage ditch is locatedjust east of the SRSNE property boundary. The former Cianciproperty (now owned by SRSNE) is located just east of the Conrailright-of-way. This property was previously occupied by aconstruction company. During the rest of this report the formerCianci property will be considered off-site. To the west of theSRSNE property are two (2) properties, a private residential lotowned by Yorski, and the Jadel Farms, Inc. (former Delahuntyproperty). Just south of the site is a property owned by JadelFarm Inc. Entrance to the site is controlled by two fences on theaccess road from Lazy Lane (see Appendix 1). Access to the formerCianci property is from Lazy Lane. However, the former Cianciproperty is open and accessible to individuals in the community. Just south of the Cianci property is the Town of Southingtonwellfield property.

Solvents Recovery of New England operated as a hazardous wastetreatment and handling plant from 1955 to March of 1991. In March1991, the facility was ordered to shut down operations by the Stateof Connecticut Superior Court as per the negotiations that occurredunder the Partial Stipulated Judgement (February 27, 1991) betweenSRSNE and the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection. In addition, SRSNE's liability insurance was canceled in March1991, and thus final closure of the facility occurred on May 29,1991.

The SRSNE facility includes: two buildings; a shed; twoabove/ground fuel blending tanks (9,000- and 12,000-galloncapacity); a fuel storage area with four empty above/ground tanks;the dispersing area; a truck-loading containment area; adrum-storage area; and 25 ground water recovery wells with anassociated air-stripping tower. Asphalt pavement occupies 80percent of the 3.5 acre site. Stormwater in the blending tank,drum storage, and truck loading and unloading areas collects inthree sumps and is pumped to the air-stripping tower of the groundwater recovery system as per the National Priority PollutantDischarge Elimination System (NPDES) permit.

Portions of an off-site ground water recovery system were installedon the Town of Southington property. This recovery system is notoperational at this time since the Connecticut Department ofEnvironmental Protection has not granted SRSNE a discharge permitfor these wells, due to concerns over waste water discharges to theQuinnipiac River.

The town of Southington's production wells 6 and 4 are located1,400 and 2,000 feet south of the SRSNE property boundary,respectively. Topographically the site is located in an areacharacterized by rolling hills. The site is generally flat,approximately 165 feet above sea level.

The SRSNE Inc., facility began its solvent-recovery operations inl955. From 1988 to May 1991, the facility performed two types ofwaste management activities: (1) fuel blending; and (2) wastetransfer. From l955 to l988 the facility operations included thedistillation of recoverable solvents in batch stills. From 1957 tol967 the distillation process generated unusable solvent sludgeswhich were disposed of in two (2) unlined on-site lagoons.

According to CT DEP Water Compliance inspection records, (Dibble,page 5, January 30, 1968) the sludges were also disposed of at theOld Turnpike Landfill approximately 6 miles south of SRSNE froml966 to l967.

The Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) watercompliance inspections records indicate that after the lagoons werefilled (1967), the surface water runoff from the SRSNE sitecontinued to contaminate the ditch, stream, and wetlands on theCianci Property with solvents and oils.

An on-site open pit incinerator for the thermal destruction ofsolvent and metal sludges was installed in l966 and operated untill974. Fly ash from the incinerator was disposed of on-site justnorth of the incinerator. In l982 the incinerator was dismantled. Since then, the incinerator and fly ash disposal areas have beenpaved over with asphalt. A review of CT DEP Air Compliance recordsfor SRSNE and the Town of Southington indicate that the incineratorwas an active air pollution source. A review of complaints filedin the CT DEP air compliance unit records indicated that thevegetation along the southern neighboring properties was eithercovered with black fly ash or dead as a result of incineratorparticulate emissions. Heavy metal contamination (such as lead,mercury and cadmium) of soils and vegetation on neighboringproperties was also identified (Houseman l974). In l974 theincinerator emissions were identified as a potential airbornehealth hazard (Housman CT DEP l974). A study conducted in l974 bythe CT DEP air compliance unit indicated that the projectedemissions of lead from the SRSNE incinerator were in excess of therecommended standard at that time (5 ug/m3).

Composite sampling of mixing tank sludge, performed prior to thematerial being fed into the open burning pit, contained thefollowing concentrations of metals, cadmium 400 ppb; lead 22,000 to24,000 ppb; chromium 8,194 to 16,433 ppb; copper 73,663 to 313,283 ppb; mercury 1,528 to 1,880 ppb and zinc 2,267 to 19,279 ppb.

Fecal coliform bacteria were also found in the discharge pipe thatcarried cooling water, boiler blow-down, and surface run off fromthe process area in the late l970's. High concentrations of mixedsolvents were found in the facility's septic system, which suggeststhat SRSNE may have disposed of wastes into their septic system.

In l988 the three batch stills were removed and spent solventsreceived by SRSNE were transferred to other facilities for recoveryuntil the facility closed in March 1991. According to an EPAInspection report (February 2, l989) 75 percent of SRSNE's wastevolume received was fuel-blended and the remaining 25 percent wastransferred for off-site disposal, incineration, or recovery. Thefacility processed between 3 and 5 million gallons of liquidhazardous wastes and 100,000 pounds of solid hazardous wastesannually. The liquid wastes included unrecoverablespent/solvent-based fuels, spent chlorinated solvents, and wastesgenerated from their fuel-blending operations. Solid hazardouswastes included gloves, rubber, cloth, rags, plastics, asphalt, andmine wastes. The facility processed approximately 170,000 gallonsof state-regulated wastes annually which included spentlubricating, and hydraulic oils, and antifreeze. Waste watergenerated on-site included non-contact cooling water from thefuel-blending operations; well overflow, generated from the groundwater recovery system; boiler blow down, generated from boilersteam condensate, and stormwater runoff.

In l985, SRSNE constructed twenty-five (25) recovery wells on-site,which are intended to operate continuously, creating a hydraulicbarrier to prevent migration of ground water away from the site. However, according to a 1989 EPA inspection report (EPA InspectionReport February 1-2, 1989; page 13), the ground water recoverysystem was not operating as a continuous hydraulic barrier toprevent off-site migration of contaminated ground water as thesystem is unable to obtain the necessary drawdown needed to preventoff-site migration. In addition, according to the NUS Phase Iinvestigation findings of the Remedial Investigation/FeasibilityStudy (RI/FS, l99l), contaminated ground water is migrating. According to SRSNE officials, the average daily flow of waste waterdischarged into the Quinnipiac River from the ground water recoverysystem ranges between 6,000 gallons per day (gpd) to 14,000 gpd.

B. SITE VISIT

On August 14 1990, a site visit was performed by the ConnecticutDepartment of Health Services The site visit consisted ofinterviews with Ernest Gedeon, Director of EnvironmentalCompliance, and James Hulm, Vice President of SRSNE, and awalk-through of the site and former Cianci property. The followingobservations were made:

  1. Entrance to the site is controlled by two fences on the accessroad from Lazy Lane. A 7-foot-high, chain-linked fence withbarbed wire along the perimeter of the property, encloses theSRSNE site. Fencing was observed along the northern side of theformer Cianci property. There are no current access limitationsto this property. According to other SRSNE officials, childrenride dirt bikes and rabbit hunt on the former Cianci property.

  2. Wetlands are located along the western portion of the formerCianci property.

  3. The on-site ground water treatment system consists of 25 groundwater recovery wells (located along the eastern and southernboundary of the SRSNE site) an air stripper, and two (2)overflow tanks (located on the western side of the site.)

  4. The site appeared reasonably clean with no unusual stains,spills, or odors detected.

  5. The off-site recovery system installed on the Town of Southington property was not operational at the time of our site visit.

  6. Piles of vegetative material (branches, leaves, etc) approximately 5-7 feet in height, were observed on the southwest side of the property. The property is not paved in this area.


  7. Piles of road aggregate material were observed on the southwestside of the property. The property is not paved in this area.

  8. Two, deteriorated, 55-gallon steel drums were observed on thesouth central side of the site. The property is not paved inthis area. The SRSNE representatives did not know the drums werethere, or know of their contents, but stated that they woulddispose of them properly.

  9. Six pole-mounted transformers were observed. The transformersare the property of Northeastern Utilities. According to arepresentative of Northeast Utilities, the transformers have notbeen tested and therefore can range anywhere from between 50 to500 ppm PCB contamination. No unusual conditions (i.e., stains,leaks) were observed on the transformers.

A second site visit was conducted on July 17, 1991 by the CT DHS,and the CT DEP. The site visit consisted of an interview with Mr.Brian Nadeau of SRSNE and a walk-through of the site. Thefollowing observations were made:

  1. All operations had ceased, and all SRSNE drums of processedmaterials (SOLFUEL) and waste had been removed from thefacility. All process, loading /unloading, and drum storageareas were clean. All above ground storage tanks were empty andall containment pads were clean.

  2. Over forty (40) 55-gallon drums were observed throughout theSRSNE site. The drums were the property of NUS, the US EPASuperfund Remedial Investigation/Feasibility study consultant. Most of the drums had information on the tops indicating thecontents were rinses and tailings from well drilling and/or soilboring activities being conducted on-site by NUS.

  3. Two (2) box trailers were observed on-site. One was ade-identified SRSNE trailer and the other was a Ryder trailer. Neither trailer contained any waste or chemical. Both trailerswere the property of Northeast Chemical (NEC) of Ohio as theycarried the NEC transporter identification number.

  4. Deteriorated asbestos-like material was observed in theinsulation on the condenser located outside in the process area. The condenser has a manufacturer's label indicating it wasmanufactured in 1962. Asbestos was commonly used in themanufacture of insulation in the 1960s.

C. DEMOGRAPHICS, LAND USE, AND RESOURCE USE

The Town of Southington had a l980 Census Population of 36,879persons. The area surrounding the site represents a mixture ofcommercial, residential, light industrial, and agricultural uses. Residential and agricultural areas are located within l00 feet ofthe site's north-western, western, and southern propertyboundaries. Residential and commercial areas also are located justeast of the former Cianci property. The nearest school is NorthCentral Elementary School which is located approximately 5,000 feetsouth of the site. The school has a student population ofapproximately 26l. The SRSNE site is located in the StandardMetropolitan Statistical Area #5440, County #003, and Census Tracts4302 and 4306. Approximately 25 percent of the population in bothtracts is over 60 years of age and another l3 percent is under fiveyears of age. The population is 98 percent white divided equallybetween male and females.

The Southington Water Company's Curtiss Well field is locatedapproximately l,200 feet south of SRSNE. Production wells 4 and 6are located in this field. Well 4 was installed in l966 and well6 in l976. The wells were identified as contaminated with VOCs andpossibly heavy metals in l976 and l977. According to theSouthington Water Company, all public water well sources are pumpedinto the town's distribution system and therefore blended together. According to the Southington Water Department records,wells number 4 and 6 yielded between approximately six (6) tothirty-six (36) percent of the towns water supply during the yearsthey were in operation (from 1966 to 1979.) However, thoseresidences located in the immediate vicinity of these wells couldhave received as much as 90 percent of their water supply fromthese wells. Town Production Well was deactivated in 1979 and TownProduction Well 6 was deactivated in 1980.

It should be noted that during the years 1976 and 1979 when thewells were identified as containing VOCs, there were no Federal orState Maximum Contaminant Levels (MCL) in place for VOCs. In thelate 1970's there were SNARL's (Significant No Adverse ResponseLevels) which were later replaced by the State of ConnecticutAction Levels which are still in effect today.

The Curtiss well field is not being used as a water supply at thepresent time. The nearest private drinking water well is locatedalongside of the entrance to the SRSNE facility. Seventeen (l7)private water wells are located within l,000 feet of the site. There are approximately 279 private drinking-water wells within lmile of the site.

The Quinnipiac River is used for fishing and swimming. Wetlandscan be found throughout the former Cianci property as the area ischaracterized by poor drainage. Freshwater wetlands also arelocated approximately 3,000 feet south of the SRSNE. Two ponds arelocated on private properties approximately 300 feet to the northand south of SRSNE facility.

D. HEALTH OUTCOME DATA

1. Tumor Incidence in Southington, CT

On March 17, 1990, correspondence was received by the ConnecticutState Department of Health Service (DHS) from a resident ofSouthington, Connecticut stating that there appeared to be anexcess number of tumor (cancer) cases occurring in the neigh-borhood. In response, the DHS gathered data from the ConnecticutTumor Registry for the town of Southington.

Information on the total number of tumors in Connecticut wascollected for the years 1979 to 1988. Age-specific tumor incidencerates (the rate of new tumors occurring in individuals in aspecific age group) for each of the tumor sites (bladder, breast,leukemia, non-Hodgkins lymphoma, and brain) and all sites combinedwere calculated for Southington and seven (7) surrounding towns. The age-specific incidence rates were compared with those for theState of Connecticut. Standardized Incidence Ratios (SIR) werecalculated to control for the effect of age on tumor incidence andto determine whether the number of tumors occurring in Southingtonwere more than would be expected. The results are discussed in thePublic Health Implications section.

2. Infant and Perinatal Mortality Rates

Since infants are especially sensitive to many environmentalconditions, preliminary trend assessment of infant (1 to 11 months)and perinatal (fetal deaths, age greater than 20 weeks and neonataldeaths age 1 to 28 days) mortality rates was performed by CT DHSDivision of Health Surveillance & Planning Unit. Infant andperinatal mortality rates were calculated for Southington and thesurrounding towns for the years 1947 to 1988 and compared withthose of the state for the same period by the DHS Division ofHealth Surveillance & Planning. The results are discussed in thePublic Health Implications section.

3. Learning Disabilities

In the summer of 1990, Southington residents expressed theirconcern that there is a higher than expected number of childrenbeing diagnosed/classified as learning disabled. A preliminaryreview of the average prevalence rate of children in Southingtonwith Learning Disabilities was conducted by the CT DHS Division ofEnvironmental Epidemiology and Occupational Health.

According to the Learning Disabilities Act of l969, learningdisabled children are defined as follows: Children with special(specific) learning disabilities exhibit a disorder to one or moreof the basic psychological processes involved in understanding orin using spoken and written language. These may be manifested indisorders of listening, thinking, talking, reading, writing,spelling or arithmetic. They include conditions which have beenreferred to as perceptual handicaps, brain injury, minimal braindysfunction, dyslexia, developmental aphasia, etc. They do notinclude learning problems which are due primarily to visual,hearing, or motor handicaps, to mental retardation, emotionaldisturbances or to the environmentally disadvantaged. The causesof most learning disabilities remain unknown.

Prevalence rates were calculated for twelve (12) public schools inSouthington and compared with the prevalence rate of learningdisabilities for the state for the l988-l989 school year. Theresults of this preliminary investigation are discussed in thePublic Health Implications section.

4. Birth Defects:

The Connecticut Birth Defects Registry was accessed to evaluatewhether increased rates of birth defects exist in Southington. Birth defects data was available for the years l983, l985 and l986. Results are discussed further in the Public Health Implicationssection.


COMMUNITY HEALTH CONCERNS

A citizens group has formed in Southington to represent theirinterest in the investigation of SRSNE (SAFE - SouthingtonAssociation for the Environment). Southington residents have beenexpressing their concerns and filing complaints about SRSNE'soperations since its onset in the late l950's. A public meetingwas held in Southington on July 26, l990, to discuss EPA'senvironmental assessment of the site and pending legal actionsagainst SRSNE. Residents expressed anger and concern over thecontaminants they believe they have been exposed to as a result ofSRSNE's past and present operations.

A second public meeting was held in Southington on July 18, 1991,by the USEPA to discuss the site status and the RemedialInvestigation Phase I Report. Specific health concerns expressedby the local residents at the meetings include the following:

  1. Several residents expressed that they have suffered illness,nausea, vomiting, and respiratory discomfort from past exposureto the air pollution generated from the open pit incinerator aswell as present fugitive emissions.

  2. One resident believed that during the operation of theincinerator, phosgene gas may have been generated as aby-product. The resident stated that one summer six (6)residents that lived on Lazy Lane had died from heart failure asa result of exposure to phosgene gas.

  3. Although the three (3) contaminated public water wells have beendeactivated, Southington residents have expressed fear anddistrust over the towns drinking-water supply. Severalresidents believe the town's present water supply iscontaminated with metals and organics.

  4. Several residents with family members who have died from cancerbelieve they developed cancer as a result of drinking groundwater contaminated with solvents.

  5. The residents claim that SRSNE has and still is performingillegal activities (on-site dumping of chemicals) which are apotential health hazard.

  6. Residents are concerned about the health hazards of thechemicals and bad odors emitted when the ground water recoverysystem is in operation. Residents complain that the odor makesthem nauseous, forcing them to leave their homes.

  7. Three women whose children have been diagnosed as learningdisabled believe their child's condition is a result of SRSNE'scontamination.

  8. Residents expressed concern over the water quality of theQuinnipiac River and the fact that they no longer feel safeswimming in it because they believe that it was contaminated bythe SRSNE facility. In addition, they are concerned that theground water recovery system's discharge into the river iscontributing to the contamination of the river.

  9. Residents expressed concern that the ground water recoverysystem's air stripper is contaminating the air with VOCs andthat the total VOC emissions had in the past exceeded 5 tons peryear.

  10. Residents are concerned over potential exposures from sites that SRSNE had reportedly disposed of waste. According to residents,signed affidavits have been obtained by a local attorney, fromtruck drivers that had hauled waste from SRSNE. One residentstated that these affidavits identify sites where waste fromSRSNE was disposed of.

Public Comments on the Public Health Assessment

The public comment period for reviewing this public healthassessment took place from November 1 to December 31, 1991. Thelocations for reviewing the public health assessment included theSouthington Health Department, the Town Clerk's Office, and thePublic Library. In addition, the Southington Association for theEnvironment (SAFE) held a town meeting on December 2, 1991 todiscuss the public health assessment with residents and collecttheir comments.

All written comments that were received by CT DHS were responded toand can be viewed in Response to Comments in Appendix 6.


ENVIRONMENTAL CONTAMINATION AND PHYSICAL HAZARDS

Various contaminants have been detected in ground water, surfacewater, soils, and air. Tables I, II, and III include a listing ofthe potential contaminants of concern which have been identifiedboth on-site and off-site.

Several consultant reports (Wehran 1982; Warzyn 1980; Ecology andthe Environment l982; YWC l985, l986, l987, l988; and Roy F. Westonl988, l989) focused on both on-site and off-site contaminantmigration. NUS corporation has been contracted by the EPA toperform a Remedial Investigation/ Feasibility Study on the SRSNEand former Cianci properties. With the exception of ambient airdata (NUS July 1991), no US EPA RI/FS data was included in thisreport.

A review of previously performed hydrogeologic studies indicatesthe contamination of off-site drinking water wells 4 and 6 may haveoccurred from SRSNE and possibly other sources. These othersources include facilities that were hydraulically upgradient andwithin 200 feet of the Curtiss Wellfield. Several of thesefacilities are no longer in operation. They are as follows:

  • Caldwell Property (Supreme Lake Manufacturing)
  • Southington Form Tool Company
  • Chrome Plating Factory
  • Ideal Forge Company

According to the Warzyn Report (l980), there are possibly two otherunidentified sources of contamination, including a source near theCianci production well and a source located upgradient from theSouthington Form Tool Company.

Table 1.

ON-SITE CONTAMINATION
Contaminant Surface Soil (ppb) Groundwater (ppb)
     
1,1 dichloroethane ND - 58,000 (1) 470 - 2,500 (4)
Ethyl Benzene 15 - 720,000 (1) 8410 (4)
trans-1,2-dichloroethene ND - 2,300 (1) 3,500 - 28,930 (4)
1,1,1 Trichloroethane ND - 260,000 (1) 32,000(4) - 60,000 (2)
Trichloroethlene ND - 500,000 (1) 33,270 (4)
Methyl Ethyl Ketone ND - 44,000 (1) 25,000 (4)
Methlene Chloride 69 - 7,400 (1) ND - 31,000 (4)
Acetone ND - 10,000 (1) 6,750 (4) - 10,000 (4)
Toluene ND - 500,000 (1) 23,310 - 38,000 (4)
Tetrachloroethylylene 10 - 820,000 (1) 3, 510 - 17,000 (4)
Isopropanol ND - 230, 000 (1) ND - 12, 580 (4)
1,1,2,2 tetrachloroethylene - - - - 18 - 23,000 (5)
Vinyl Chloride - - - - ND - 190 (4)
1,2 trichloroethylene - - - - 25,000 - 5,000 (5)

PCB's 590 - 3,100 ppm (3) 0.01 ppm (3)
Dioxin/furan 0.32 - 5.34 ppb (3) - - -
Phthalates, naphalenes, phenols 30 - 48,000 ppb (3) 13 - 100 ppb (3)
Cyanide   0.01 ppb (10/87) (6)
Chromium 11 - 420 ppm (3) 13 ppb (10/87) (6)
Lead 15 - 2,160 ppm (3) - - -
Cadmium 4 - 240 ppm (3) - - -
Barium ND - 682 ppm (3) - - -
Mercury 0.1 - 3.1 ppm (3) - - -

   
(1) YWC (8/85)    
(2) Warzyn (4/80)    
(3) Roy F. Weston (6/88; 4/89)    
(4) NPDES Permit (5/90)    
(5) EPA (1980)    
(6) NPDES Permit (10/87)    
     
ppb = parts per billion    
ppm = parts per million    
- - - = no data    
ND = not detected    


TABLE II-A: OFF-SITE CONTAMINATION

Contaminant Groundwater
(ppb)
Quinnipiac Surface
Water (ppb)
Upstream-Downstream
Private
Residential
Wells (ppb)
Cianci
Wells (ppb)
* CT Action
Level (ppb)
**EPA MCL
(ppb)
Acetone 10,000 (1) 51-120 (4) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Ethyl Benzene 440-12,000 (2) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 680
1,1-dichlorethane 400 (3) - - - - - - - - 1,100 (6) - - - - - - - -
t,1,2-dichloroethylene 1,000-10,000 (1) - - - - 190 (5) - - - - - - - - 70#
1,1,1, Trichloroethane 1,000-10,000 (1) ND-35 (4) 12 (5) 9,600 (7) 200 200
1,2 dichloroethylene - - - - - - - - 200 (5) 11,000 (8) 5 5
Trichloroethylene - - - - ND-16 (4) 120 (5) 40,000 (6) 5 5
Tetrachloroethylene - - - - ND-16 (4) 17 (5) 3,500 (8) 5 10
Chloroform - - - - 42-63 (4) - - - - - - - - - - - - 100
Methylene Chloride 40,000 (7) - - - - - - - - 16,000 (8) 25 25
Tetrahydrofuran 1,000-10,000 (1) 11-42 (4) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
1,1-dichloroethylene 57,000 (7) - - - - 200 (5) 484 (9) 7 7
Methyl Isobutyl Ketone 2,900-5,000 (1) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Isopropyl alcohol 1,000-10,000 (1) ND-780 (4) - - - - 210,000 (10) 1,000 - - - -
Xylene 10,000 (1) - - - - - - - - 2,000 (6) - - - - 400#
Total VOC's - - - - - - - - - - - - 6-108.3 (11) - - - - - - - -
             
1, 4-dioxane - - - - 500-1700 (4) - - - - - - - - 20 - - - -
Sodium - - - - - - - - 19,100-54,600 (11) - - - - - - - - - - - -
Lead - - - - - - - - 33.8 (11) - - - - 50 50
Mercury - - - - 0.0007 - - - - - - - - - - - - 2
Chromium - - - - 0.27 - - - - - - - - - - - - 50
Cadmium - - - - 0.026 - - - - - - - - - - - - 10
Copper - - - - 0.25 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Mangenese - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 5,000 - - - -
Barium - - - - - - - - 1,000 (11) - - - - - - - - 1,000

       
(1) Roy F. Weston (1988) (7) EPA (1982)        
(2) Warzyn (1980) (8) YWC (1985)        
(3) YWC (1984) (9) YWC (1983)        
(4) CT DEP (1987) YWC (1987) (10) YWC (1986)        
(5) CT DHS (1990) (11) EPA (1990)        
(6) EPA (1980)          
         
ppb = parts per billion * CT Action Levels Drinking Water      
-- = no data ** EPA MCL = Maximum Contaminant Level      
ND = not detected # Current EPA Guideline Level      


TABLE II-B.

OFF-SITE CONTAMINATION PUBLIC WATER WELLS
Contaminant Well #4
(ppb) (1)
Well # 5
(ppb) (1)
Well #6
(ppb) (1)
CT Action
Level
(ppb) (3)
EPA MCL
(ppb)
           
1,1-dichloroethylene 210 (2/79) - - - - 7 7
1,1-dichloroethane 990 (7/79) - - - - - - 5
t,1,2-dichloroethane 390 (7/79) 6 (2/79) - - - - - -
1,1,1, trichloroethane 3500 (7/79) 300 (2/79) 120 (11/78) 200 200
tetrachloroethylene 22 (7/79) - - - - 5 10
Carbon tetrachloride 35 (7/79) 8.9 (2/79) - - 5 5
Hexane 91 (7/79) - - - - - - - -
Methane 400 (7/79) 480 (12/77) 130 (11/78) - - - -
Methylene Chloride 12 (7/79) - - - - 25 25
Chlorobutane 930 (7/79) - - - - - - - -
1,1,2 trichloroethylene 120 (7/79) 4.5 (2/79) - - - - - -
trichloroethylene 22 (7/79) 45 (2/79) 11 (11/78) 5 5
Methyl Ethyl Ketone - - - - 20 (11/78) - - - -

  (ppm) (2) (ppm)(2) (ppm)(2)    
Lead ND-0.07 (10/76;
7/76; 2/77;
7/76; 5/77;
2/78)
ND-0.007 (10/76
8/76; 3/77; 7/77)
ND-0.06 (7/76
5/77; 2/78)
50 50
           
Mercury ND-0.003 (2/77; 5/77; 2/78) ND-0.0018 (8/76) ND-0.003 (7/76;
5/77; 2/78
   

(1) Southington Water Department - Newlands Sanitary Labs
(2) Connecticut Department of Health Laboratory
(3) State of Connecticut Action Levels
(4) USEPA Maximum

A. ON-SITE CONTAMINATION

The on-site contamination presented in Table I includes samplingdata for soil and ground water, and reflects all contaminants ofconcern identified and their range of concentrations. Thesechemicals are those which are present in high concentrationsrelative to background levels or screening values, or have highlevels of toxicity.

On-site contamination of the 3.7-acre site is extensive. SRSNE hasbeen located at the subject site for 35 years. For approximately10 years, SRSNE disposed of millions of gallons of a wide range oforganic and metal chemicals into the ground in two unlined lagoons. These lagoons were drained and covered. However, large amounts ofchemical wastes remained in the ground. An open-pit incineratorwas used to burn still-bottoms and the potentially hazardous wastefly ash generated was subsequently disposed of on site. Wastechemicals were discharged directly into the Quinnipiac River. There is evidence that SRSNE may have also disposing of solventsinto the facility's septic system. Historically poor housekeepingpractices (i.e. chemical spills, leaking storage containers) wouldhave also contributed to the on-site soil and ground watercontamination.

Ground water contamination due to SRSNE's operations is documentedas far back as l965 (Shulman L., CT DEP, June 7, 1965) when SRSNE'sbedrock well was reported to be contaminated with volatile organiccompounds. The majority of the ground water contaminants presentat SRSNE have been detected at or near bedrock. Contaminants inthe aquifer beneath the site have migrated off-site, contaminatingsoil and ground water to the south and east and possibly along thenorthern property boundary.

Soil samples collected by various consultants (YWC, l985-l986 RoyF. Weston l988) indicate the presence of volatile organic compounds(VOCs), semi-volatile organics (SVOCs), pesticides, polychlorinatedbiphenyls (PCBs) and dioxin. The VOCs detected include; acetone,methyl ethyl ketone, 1,1,1-trichloroethane, trichloroethylene,tetrachloroethylene, toluene, isopropanol, ethyl benzene, and 1,1dichloroethane. The soil concentrations range from ND to 820,000ppb with some of the highest concentrations beingtetrachloroethylene, and toluene. SVOCs consisted primarily ofphenols phthalates, and naphthalenes and ranged from 30 ppb to 800ppb. Various PCBs (Arochlors 1248, 1254, and 1260) were detectedin the soils ranging from 590 to 3,l00 ppm. The presence ofdioxins and furans were also identified in the area of the lagoonsranging from 0.032 to 5.34 ppb. Dioxins and furans occur in anumber of different forms (isomers). In Table I, the range of alldioxins/furans are listed without differentiation.

VOC air emissions are generated at the SRSNE facility principallyfrom the groundwater recovery system air-stripping tower. Theground water recovery system processes up to 14,000 gallons per dayof contaminated ground water, depending on seasonal variations inprecipitation. At the present time the facility generates a totalof approximately 5 tons per year of VOC emissions. Airmeasurements of some of the contaminants are discussed further inthe "Off-Site Contamination" section.

B. OFF-SITE CONTAMINATION

The off-site contamination presented in Tables II-A and II-Brepresents the contaminants of concern identified in the groundwater on the neighboring properties, which include the formerCianci property and the Southington Water Department property. Table II-B also represents data from three (3) public water supplywells 4, 5, and 6, and from nearby private drinking water wells. The data on Table II-B represents the maximum concentrationsdetected. It is important to note that well #5 is locatedapproximately 4 miles south of SRSNE and its' contamination is notdirectly site related. However, SRSNE generated wastes which weredisposed of near well #5 (e.g., Old Southington Landfill) and sincewater from all three (3) wells that were contaminated was blendedand distributed through the town's water supply system, thusexposing a large portion of the town, the data is included here.

Historical off-site ground water sampling data shown in Table II-Aindicates that these compound have existed at concentrationsexceeding 200,000 ppb (EPA l980; YWC l985, l986). Other compoundsidentified by the EPA (l980) in concentrations which range from2,000 to l00,000 ppb include:

  • l,l dichloroethylene
  • trans, l,2-dichloroethylene
  • methyl isobutyl ketone
  • toluene
  • trichloroethylene
  • tetrachloroethylene
  • ethyl benzene
  • xylene

During July l990, a residential well sampling program was conductedby the CT DHS to ascertain the extent of private drinking-waterwell contamination, and to conduct a private well use survey. Tworounds of sampling were performed on residential wells located onCurtiss Street, Lazy Lane, Little Fawn Road, and Ridgewood Road. Seventeen (17) wells were tested and one (1) was found to becontaminated with VOCs and provided with bottled water by the CTDEP. However, the individual in the home with the contaminatedprivate well had been drinking bottled water for more than tenyears. The CT DEP is in the process of arranging extension ofpublic water to this residence. The private well data is providedon (Table II-A.)

Trace amounts of VOCs, below current standards, were detected infour other private wells sampled during this same survey. Theseinclude methyl tert-butyl ether (1.6 ppb); trichloroethylene (0.6ppb); 1,2-dichloroethylene (0.5 ppb), and chloroform (0.9 ppb.)

In June and July of 1990, the CT DEP delineated an area consideredat risk for possible ground water contamination from SRSNEactivities. The CT DEP compiled a list of all private wells in thearea of concern, and verified those homes in the area served bypublic water. In addition, the CT DEP sampled two (2) privateresidential wells located west of SRSNE, not previously sampled bythe CT DHS.

In response to citizens concerns, the United States EnvironmentalProtection Agency (USEPA) offered to sample any private well withintwo (2) miles of SRSNE at the residents request. The EPA sampled64 wells in October of 1990. The well sampling results are asfollows: seven (7) wells with elevated sodium; three (3) wellswith elevated lead; (above the proposed MCL of 20 ppb) and fivewells with VOCs below Federal and State actions levels.

 

The CT DEP conducted follow-up sampling on contaminated wells inDecember 1990 and the results are as follows: Five (5) wells haddetectable levels of VOCs below Federal and State action levels;three (3) wells had detectable levels of lead; six (6) wells hadsodium levels above 20 ppm; and two (2) wells had elevated VOCswhich exceeded action levels and were subsequently provided withbottled water. The CT DEP is in the process of arranging extensionof public water to these residences. The contamination of thesewells is not related to SRSNE. The three (3) wells identified ascontaminated with lead were re-sampled by the CT DEP, two showedlower lead concentrations (below the EPA a action level of 15 ppb). The residents with elevated sodium results were notified of thepossible health risks and one resident was placed on bottled water.

TABLE III.

OFF SITE CONTAMINATION AMBIENT AIR
VOC'S Range Detected (ug/m3)(1) Hazard Limiting Value* (ug/m3)
8-Hour 30-Minute
Carbon Tetrachloride 0.5-0.8 300 l,500
Tetrachloroethene 0.3-0.9* -- --
Ethylbenzene 0.3-1.1* 8,700 43,500
Total Xylenes 2.6-23.6* 8,680 43,400
Chlorobenzene 0.6-8.5* 7,000 35,000
1,1 - Dichlorethylene 0.2-1.6 l5,800 79,000
* indicates breakthrough of VOC's from the front cartridge to the backup cartridge, when the sorptive capacity of the front cartridge has been exceeded.
VOC'S (Downwind only) Range Detected (ug/m3)(1) Hazard Limiting Value (ug/m3)
8-Hour 30-Minute
1,1,1 Trichloroethane 4.4-11.0 38,000 l90,000
Trichloroethylene 0.5-0.9 l,350 6,750
Toluene 4.2-12.0 7,500 37,000
Heptane 0.7-1.0 7,000 35,000
Benzene 0.8-1.9 l50 750
* Hazard Limiting Value (HLV) = Ambient air limits set by the CT DEP (1) NUS (July 1991)

Quinnipiac River surface water data are summarized on Table II-A. The volatile organic compounds that have been consistently detected in Quinnipiac River samples include: acetone, chloroform, tetrachloroethylene, tetrahydrofuran, trichloroethene, isopropyl alcohol, and 1,1,1, trichloroethane. For all the compounds measured the downstream measurements were higher, indicating SRSNE as a source.

A recent consultant report submitted to EPA as part of its remedialinvestigation (NUS, October 1990) revealed that several VOC's weredetected in ambient air samples at all sampling locations,including those taken upwind of SRSNE. The VOC's identified in theambient air are listed on Table III.

It is alleged that SRSNE disposed of hazardous wastes in severalsites located throughout Southington. The following is a list ofthose sites that have been identified or are suspected to date. These sites are currently being investigated by the CT DEP.

  • The former Cianci property.
  • Gravel pit located on Frank Marek property.
  • Gravel pit located on the former Mastrianni property now The Meadows condominiums and apartments complex, Flanders Road.
  • Quinnipiac River bank just south of Lazy Lane.
  • Old Southington Landfill
  • Angellilo Scrap Metal

The Quinnipiac River bank just south of Lazy Lane is beinginvestigated by the U.S.EPA as part of the RI/FS.

C. QUALITY ASSURANCE AND QUALITY CONTROL

Several consulting firms (YWC, Warzyn, Wehran, and Roy F. Weston)have conducted soil and ground water sampling both on site andoff-site. The QA/QC procedures used by each of these consultantswas not evaluated by the Connecticut Department of Health Services. Conclusions contained in this Public health assessment are based onall the data reviewed. The accuracy of these conclusions isdetermined by the availability and reliability of the data. Asindicated in Table II-B, elevated concentrations of lead andmercury were detected in three public drinking water wells in 1976. The levels ranged from ND to 0.07 ppm for lead which exceeds thecurrent EPA MCL of 0.05 ppm. However, it should be noted thatthere exists some controversy regarding the reliability of the dataanalysis. Subsequent sampling in 1976 and 1977 did not detect leadand mercury contamination in the three wells. The well watersamples may have become contaminated during collection orlaboratory preparation for analysis.

D. PHYSICAL HAZARDS

No physical hazards were observed during our site visit on July, l71991.


PATHWAYS ANALYSES

A. ENVIRONMENTAL PATHWAYS (Fate and Transport)

GROUND WATER - Contaminants disposed of on soil or in lagoons canbe flushed down into the soil and underlying ground water byprecipitation and surface water runoff. Once in the ground waterthese contaminants can move vertically and horizontally with theground water flow and thereby contaminate nearby wells. Theprincipal overburden (soil) materials present throughout the siteare characterized by fairly loose sediments capable of transmittingcontaminants through ground water (USGS l96l; Warzyn l980; Werhanl982). These deposits range from l2 to greater than 80 feet thickthroughout the Southington area. Discontinuous lenses of silty andclay soils occur throughout the overburden deposits. The thicknessof these lenses ranges from 5 to l4 feet. The permeability ofthese deposits range from medium to high indicating fairly easymigration for many contaminants.

The underlying bedrock is the New Haven Arkose of the Newark Group,Upper Triassic age. The New Haven Arkose is characterized byinterbeds of grayish-orange, pink to very pale orange conglomeraticarkose, and grayish to dark-reddish brown siltstone. This bedrocktype has a moderate amount of fractures that will also allowcontaminants to migrate in ground water. The depth to the bedrockranges from approximately 7 to 30 feet in the immediate site area(Wehran l982). Mazzaferro (l979) reports that the bedrock averagesapproximately 4,000 feet in thickness.

The SRSNE site was regraded in the late 1970's and as a result,several feet of fill material overlie the soil deposits. Inaddition, much of the site has been covered with concrete andasphalt pavement.

The ground water flow in the area occurs under unconfinedconditions within the soil (stratified drift deposits) andfractured bedrock. Glacial till deposits act as a semi-confininglayer to the underlying bedrock aquifer within this layer. Undernon-pumping conditions, when the ground water recovery wells arenot pumping, ground water flows east toward the Quinnipiac River. The overburden beneath the site increases in thickness toward theQuinnipiac River. Between SRSNE and the river is a zone of groundwater discharge, whereas west of SRSNE is a zone of recharge areawhere rain/surface water infiltrates into ground water. The depthto ground water ranges from near ground level to approximately 20feet (Warzyn l980).

A review of the extensive ground water sampling data and varioushydrogeologic investigations suggest that a majority of thecontaminated ground water in the overburden has migrated in towardsthe south, southeast. However some information (Ecology andEnvironment 1982) suggests that lesser amounts may have movedhydraulically to the northwest; and transverse to the direction offlow.

In l982 Ecology and Environment Consultants prepared Isocon maps(Isocon maps show contour lines of equal concentrations) depictingthe ground water contamination plume(s) originating from the SRSNEsite. The report suggests that parts of the contamination plumeextends north of the site, and transverse to ground water flow. Wells located just northwest and transverse to ground water flowhave become contaminated. These wells include a privatedrinking-water well. This contamination may be related to (l)movement of contaminants as dense, non-aqueous phase liquids, (2)movement of ground water through bedrock fractures with poorlycharacterized hydraulic properties, and (3) additional sourceareas. Separate phase contaminants (contaminants not in solutionwith water) may exist in the underlying bedrock due to the largequantities of liquid wastes disposed of on the SRSNE site as wellas the former Cianci property. A review of ground water samplinganalyses conducted from l980 to l986 (EPA l980; YWC l985; l986)shows decreasing concentrations. However, current data on groundwater contaminants are not available and will be acquired by NUSduring the Remedial Investigation and Feasibility Study.

According to the Water Quality Classification Map of Connecticut,(Murphy, 1987.) The ground water on-site has an adopted waterquality classification of GB/GA. GB/GA Class ground waters arenot suitable for direct human consumption without treatment due towaste discharges, spills, or leaks of chemicals. The goal of theState of Connecticut is to prevent further degradation of class GBground waters by preventing any additional discharges which couldcause irreversible contamination and to restore the ground water inthe area to drinking water class GA. Ground waters with theadopted water quality classification of GA are presumed suitablefor human consumption without the need for treatment.

SURFACE WATER - In general, the land slopes toward the QuinnipiacRiver, which is the main drainage feature in the area. TheQuinnipiac River is to the east of the former Cianci property andflows south and then west between Southington Production wells 4and 6. The nearest surface water body is a tributary of theQuinnipiac River which flows just southeast of the site. Thepotential environmental pathways for contaminant migration to theQuinnipiac River from the SRSNE site are:

  1. Contaminated ground water discharge to the surface waters ofthe Quinnipiac River.

  2. Stormwater runoff is collected in three sump pumps located inthe drum storage, blending tank, and the truck loading andunloading areas. The sumps pump the stormwater to the airstripping system tower for the supposed removal of volatileorganics compounds. The waste water is then discharged intothe Quinnipiac. The air stripping tower is not capable ofremoving high VOC concentrations that may have been generatedfrom chemical spills that occurred when the facility wasoperating. Therefore, contaminated waste water may have beendischarged into the Quinnipiac River. This discharge is notpermitted under the National Pollutant Discharge EliminationSystem (NPDES).

  3. Treated non-contact cooling-water effluent is discharged intothe Quinnipiac River through a combined cooling water/groundwater recovery discharge pipe. These discharges are permittedthrough the NPDES.

The discharge effluent consists of a mixture of organic compounds,many of which have been shown to accumulate in sediment and some ofwhich bioaccumulate in fish tissue. PCBs were detected in theeffluent (October l988) at concentrations of 4.l ppb. PCBs are themost likely contaminant to bioaccumulate in fish tissue, althoughthe levels measured in the effluent are quite low.

As part of the facilities NPDES permit the company is required toperform biotoxicity monitoring of its effluent. Biotoxicitytesting with fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas) and a varietyof water flea (Daphnia pulex) has been conducted on SRSNE'seffluent discharges since l987. A review of the biotoxicity dataindicates that periodically the effluent samples have been toxic tothe water flea.

The water quality classification of Bc for the Quinnipiac River inthe Southington area indicates that the river is considered to bean important fisheries resource. The CT DEP's Branch ofEnvironmental Conservation, Bureau of Fisheries and Wildlife has anactive stocking program for the Quinnipiac River immediatelydownstream from Southington. Designation of the Quinnipiac Riveras a fisheries resource implies human use of the resource and,therefore, potential of human consumption of fish in the area.

SOIL - The on-site disposal of hazardous waste sludge andincinerator fly ash, as well as poor housekeeping practices(leaking chemical storage containers, chemical spills etc.) haveextensively contaminated the soil. Sampling data from the SRSNEsite indicates the most contaminated area is where the formerprimary sludge lagoon was. The VOCs, SVOCs, PCBs and dioxins canpotentially migrate through the unconsolidated loose soil andsub-soil and thereby contaminate ground water.

A study conducted in l974 by the DEP indicated that the projectedemissions of lead from the open pit incinerator exceeded therecommended standard at that time (5 ug/m3). Heavy metalcontamination of soils and vegetation on neighboring propertiesfrom these air emissions was identified in l974 (Housman DEP l974). Heavy metals detected included lead, cadmium, and mercury. On-sitesoil is no longer an important exposure source because 80% of thefacility was paved in the summer of 1990.

AIR - VOC emissions are presently generated daily from the groundwater recovery system's air stripping tower. While no VOCemissions above state regulatory standards had been detected fromthe operation of the ground water recovery system, off-siteambient-air monitoring conducted by NUS in July of 1990 did findnumerous VOC's. Some of these VOC's were used at SRSNE and werefound downwind from the facility at levels that exceed nationalbackground levels (USEPA TEAM Study 1987). Given the complexcharacteristics related to air transport, including variablesampling conditions, wind velocity, direction and surroundingtopography, some of the VOC's detected upwind from the facility maybe attributable to SRSNE. The List of VOC's detected only indownwind locations have been documented as having been routinelyhandled by SRSNE and therefore appear to be directly attributableto emissions from the SRSNE facility.

Historically, the storage tanks at the facility were not equippedwith air pollution control devices and therefore every time a tankwas filled, a volume of air saturated with organic vapors wasdisplaced into the atmosphere. Three sumps are located within theblending tank, drum storage and truck loading and unloading areas. These sumps pump stormwater runoff to the recovery system 's airstripping cooling tower. If a spill had occurred in these areas,during the years the facility was operating the potential existedfor free liquids (solvents etc.) to be pumped into the coolingtower generating toxic air emissions.

In l989, a release of an ethyl acrylate vapor cloud occurred duringfuel blending operations. The CT DEP received complaints fromlocal residents of nausea and strong odors.

FOODCHAIN - Biotoxicity testing indicates that periodically, theeffluent discharged by SRSNE has the potential to be toxic tobiota. In addition contaminated ground water may move directly intothe river. Fish sampling has not been performed to date. Thepotential exists for the contamination of fish found in theQuinnipiac River. However most of the contaminants of concern arenot known to bioaccumulate. PCBs and dioxins are the most likelysite contaminant to accumulate in fish. These contaminants havenot been detected in the river in sampling conducted to date.

B. HUMAN EXPOSURE PATHWAYS

Based on the information reviewed, completed and potential pathwaysexist for humans to be exposed to contamination on-site andoff-site from past operations at SRSNE. These exposures can occurthrough contaminated drinking water, ambient air and food (fish).

POTENTIAL EXPOSURE PATHWAYS

  1. Ingestion, dermal (skin absorption), and inhalation exposureto elevated concentrations of VOCs or metals is possible incurrently contaminated private wells, or if private wells areinstalled in areas with contaminated ground water. Inhalationand dermal exposure can occur when contaminated well water isused for household purposes such as showering and dishwashing.

  2. Dermal and inhalation exposure to off-site contaminated soilsand surface water from recreational activities. People whocome in contact with VOC and heavy metal contaminated soil andwater near the site may absorb contaminants through the skinor may inhale contaminants on dust particles or contaminantsthat have volatilized.

  3. Inhalation exposure to nearby residents and on-site workers toVOCs stripped from the ground water.

  4. Ingestion of potentially contaminated fish from the QuinnipiacRiver or wetlands. Those fishermen and their families whocatch and consume fish frequently from the Quinnipiac riverare at most risk.

  5. VOCs, PCBs and dioxin were found in on-site soils samples andin the drainage ditch located along the eastern side of thesite. Persons engaged in recreational activities along thedrainage ditch could be exposed to these contaminants. Inaddition, persons engaged in remediation activities could beexposed to these contaminants as well.

  6. Potential dermal, inhalation and ingestion exposures to leadcontaminated soils on neighboring residential properties.

  7. Potential inhalation exposure to on-site workers to potentialasbestos materials from the consensor located outside in theold process area.

  8. The potential inhalation exposure to lead emissions and othercompounds have been documented from the burning ofapproximately l,000 gallons per day of sludge still bottoms inthe on-site open pit incinerator. The estimated period ofexposure was from l966 to l974. Those residents livingclosest to SRSNE are assumed to have had the greatest exposurefrom this source but it is impossible to precisely delineatean area of "high" exposure. In addition, dermal, inhalationand ingestion exposures to lead contaminated soils, andingestion of contaminated agricultural produce from nearbyresidential properties may have also occurred.

PAST COMPLETED EXPOSURE PATHWAYS

  1. Ingestion, dermal and inhalation exposure to watercontaminated (above natural background levels) with VOCs fromTown production well 4, (at levels as high as 3,500 ppb) foran unknown period of time between l966 (installation date) tol977 (deactivation date). Elevated levels of manganeseexceeding the US Public Health Code limit of 0.05 ppm, werealso identified (0.l0 ppm). This limit is based on aestheticproblems (taste, color) and not on adverse health effects.
  2. There is inconclusive evidence which suggests that Townwell 4 might also have been contaminated with lead andmercury for an unknown period of time. Well 4 wasidentified as contaminated in l976 by the SouthingtonWater Department and operated until l977.

  3. Ingestion, dermal and inhalation exposure to watercontaminated (above background levels) with VOCs, and possiblylead and mercury, from Town Production Well 6 from l978 tol980. The evidence for the contamination of well 6 with leadand mercury is inconclusive. Well 6 was installed andidentified as contaminated in l976 and operated intermittentlyuntil l980.

  4. Ingestion, dermal and inhalation exposure to watercontaminated (above background levels) with VOCs from TownProduction Well 5 for an unknown period of time between l972and l979. Well 5 was identified as contaminated in l976 andoperated until it was deactivated in l979. Although well 5,is not site related it is included in this report because itwas an additional source of VOC exposure for SouthingtonResidents. This contamination was not directly site related.

  5. Ingestion, dermal and inhalation exposure to watercontaminated with perchloroethylene from Town Well 2 for anunknown period of time between l954 to l983. Well number 2was identified as contaminated in l982 and deactivated. Although SRSNE has not been identified as a source ofcontamination for Well 2, it is included in this reportbecause it was an additional source of VOC exposure forSouthington residents and all public water sources wereblended together during this time period. An air stripper hassince been installed to remove the VOC contamination and thewell was reactivated in 1988. The water quality currentlymeets the state and federal standards and guidelines.

  6. Ingestion, dermal and inhalation exposure to watercontaminated with VOCs (as indicated in Table II) in two (2)private wells near the site. The wells were identified ascontaminated in l979 and l980. The levels of contamination were below the drinking water standards at that time. Theperiod of exposure is unknown. Both wells have recently beensampled and one (l) well was found to be contaminated withrespect to current drinking water standards. The residencewith the contaminated well has been drinking bottled water andis being connected to the public water supply.

  7. The potential inhalation exposure to VOC contaminationgenerated from on-site activities and ground water strippingsince the installation of the stripping tower in l986.

  8. Inhalation exposure to on-site workers from potential asbestosmaterials from the condenser located in the old process area.

PUBLIC HEALTH IMPLICATIONS

Several contaminants of concern--VOCs, heavy metals, dioxins, andPCBs--have been identified with respect to the SRSNE facility. Multiple routes of exposure have been identified both on andoff-site. As indicated in the previously described human exposurepathways, Southington residents and persons engaged in on-siteactivities have a potential for exposure by multiple routes to avariety of VOCs, heavy metals, dioxins, and PCBs. However, themost important route of exposure in terms of public healthimplications was probably the contamination of public water supplywells with VOCs. The public health implications for eachcontaminant of concern are discussed below (ATSDR ToxicologicalProfiles and other health documents are shown in the Referencesection):

A. TOXICOLOGICAL EVALUATIONS:

VOC Contamination:

VOCs have been detected in four (4) public and three (3) privateresidential wells above the current State Action Levels and EPAMaximum Contaminant Levels (MCL) and local residents have consumedthis water at certain times [Note: The contamination present intwo (2) of the public water wells and in two (2) of the privatewater wells are not site related.] In addition a complex mixtureof low levels of VOCs have been measured in ambient air near thesite exposing nearby residents.

As indicated in Tables I, II-A, II-B, and III elevatedconcentrations of a variety of VOCs have been identified in soils,ground water, and air both on-site and off-site. The reported soilconcentrations (e.g., toluene ND to 500,000 ppb;tetrachloroethylene l0 to 820,000 ppb) and ambient air levels(e.g., toluene 4.2-l2.0 ug/m3) for VOC's are above background. Persons involved in remediation activities are at risk for morehigh level VOC exposures and therefore are more likely topotentially suffer some of the acute effects (CNS) described belowfor each chemical.

l,l-dichloroethylene (l,l-DCE)

As indicated in Table II, DCE levels as high as 2l0 ppb weremeasured in public well water exceeding the current EPA MCL of 7ppb. Ambient air levels were also detected at a range of 0.2-l.6ug/m3. Hepatotoxicity has been observed in humans followingrepeated inhalation of DCE at much high concentrations. Otherstudies in humans indicate that inhalation of DCE can cause centralnervous system (CNS) toxicity and irritation of the mucousmembranes. There is also evidence based on animal studies that DCEmay also be toxic to the kidneys. Most of these effects occurredat higher levels than found at the site.

Under certain conditions (heat, and an alkali environment) DCE cangenerate chloroacetylenes which are highly neurotoxic. Thepotential exists for chloroacetylenes to form at hazardous wastesites where DCE is present.

Trichloroethylene

Trichloroethylene at levels as high as l20 ppb were measured in oneresidential well and between ll and 45 ppb in public drinking waterwells. These levels exceed the current EPA MCL of 5 ppb. Trichloroethylene was also detected in ambient air at levelsranging between 0.5-0.9 ug/m3, however these levels do not exceedthe state Hazard Limiting Value (HLV) and are close to backgroundlevels found in some parts of our country. HLVs are stateestablished standards for toxics in ambient air.

Inhalation and oral ingestion studies indicate that the bonemarrow, CNS, liver, and kidney are principal targets of high leveltrichloroethylene exposure in animals and humans. Carcinogenicitystudies have indicated that an association may exist betweenleukemia in humans and exposure to well water contaminated withchlorinated organic compounds including trichloroethylene(Kotelchuck and Parker l979; Parker and Rosen l98l; Lagakos et. al.l986 a,b). The EPA has classified trichloroethylene in Group B2 -probable human carcinogen.

Tetrachloroethylene

Tetrachloroethylene was detected at levels as high as l7 ppb in aprivate residential well and 22 ppb in a public drinking waterwell. These levels exceed the current EPA MCL of 5 ppb. Ambientair levels were documented between 0.3-0.9 ug/m3 which are nearbackground levels.

Inhalation and oral ingestion studies at high leveltetrachloroethylene exposure indicate that the main target organsappear to be the CNS, liver, and kidneys. The levels found at thesite do not usually approach these levels. Tetrachloroethylene maybe concentrated in breast milk of mothers who have been exposed. The effects of exposing infants to tetrachloroethylene throughbreast milk are unknown. In addition tetrachloroethyleneinhalation exposures can cause eye and upper respiratoryirritation, headaches, dizziness, and drowsiness at high levels. The EPA recommended a Group B (probable human carcinogen)weight-of-evidence classification for tetrachloroethylene.

Carbon Tetrachloride

Carbon tetrachloride was detected at levels ranging from 8.9 to 35ppb in public drinking water wells. These levels exceed thecurrent EPA MCL of 5 ppb. Levels in ambient air samples, rangingbetween 0.5-0.8 ug/m3 were detected and are near background levelsfound in other non-contaminated locations.

Inhalation and oral ingestion exposure to high levels of carbontetrachloride indicate that the main target organs are the liverand kidney, lung, and brain. The most immediate effects areusually to the brain. Common effects are headache and dizzinessalong with nausea and vomiting. Kidney failure is often the maincause of death in people exposed. Persons with a history ofalcohol consumption are more susceptible to the effects of carbontetrachloride. These effects are not expected at theconcentrations found at the site for nearby residents.

Based on animal and occupational exposure studies, carbon,tetrachloride may be a potential liver carcinogen. However,studies have not been performed on the effects of long-termexposure of humans to low levels of carbon tetrachloride, soeffects of such exposure are unknown at the present time.

Toluene

Although not identified in drinking water, toluene was identifiedin ground water monitoring samples at concentrations which rangedfrom 11,000 to 23,000 ppb. These levels exceed the current EPA MCLof l,000 ppb. Toluene was also in ambient air at levels rangingbetween 4.2-l2.0 ug/m3. These air levels are quite low but mayexceed background for toluene in ambient air. Inhalation exposureto toluene at much higher levels ranging from 200,000 to 300,000ppb can cause; CNS depression, dizziness, nausea and respiratoryirritation. However, studies have not been performed on the healtheffects of short or long-term exposure to toluene at low levels. None of the available studies suggest that toluene is carcinogenic.

Ethyl Benzene

As indicated in Tables I and II elevated levels of ethylbenzenewere detected in ground water monitoring wells but not in drinkingwater (440-l2,000 ppb). The current EPA MCL is 680 ppb.

At high levels (100,000 to 500,000 ppb) ethylbenzene in the air forshort periods of time can cause eyes and throat irritation (Yant etal., 1930; Thienes and Haley 1972). Ethylbenzene is also toxic tothe central nervous system causing dizziness and vertigo in humans. Animal studies indicate that exposure to ethylbenzene at highconcentrations in the air may cause liver and kidney damage,nervous system and blood changes. No studies were found whichprovide evidence regarding adverse cardiovascular,gastrointestinal, blood, immunological, musculoskeletal, liver,kidney or reproductive effects in humans following oral exposureto ethylbenzene. No studies were found which provide evidenceregarding adverse respiratory, cardiovascular, gastrointestinal,hematological, musculoskeletal, hepatic, or renal effects in humansor animals after dermal exposure to ethylbenzene (ATSDR 1990.) Liquid ethylbenzene applied directly to the skin of animals causedirritation by reddening and exfoliation and applied to the eyescaused irritation and slight injury (Wolf et al. 1956; Smyth eta;. 1962.) One long-term study in animals suggests thatethylbenzene may cause tumors (Maltoni 1985.) However, no studieswere found regarding carcinogenic effects in humans to date (ATSDR1990.)

Methylene Chloride (DCM)

As indicated in Tables I and II methylene chloride(dichloromethane), or DCM, levels as high as 3l,000 ppb have beendetected in ground water monitoring wells. The current State ofConnecticut Action Level is 25 ppb.

The primary health effects of high level DCM exposure are to theCNS. Studies in humans indicate that inhalation of DCM can causesluggishness, irritability light-headedness, nausea and headaches. The symptoms disappear after exposure ends. High levels of DCM inthe air (above 500 ppb) can irritate the eyes, nose, and throat. If DCM comes in contact with skin it can cause mild skinirritations. Eye exposure to DCM may cause severe (temporary) eyeirritation. None of the available studies suggest that DCM iscarcinogenic.

l,l,l-Trichloroethane (Methyl Chloroform)

As indicated in the environmental contamination section1,1,1,-trichloroethane levels as high as 3,500 ppb were detected inthe public drinking water supply. The current EPA MCL is 200 ppb. The main effect of 1,1,1 trichloroethane is CNS depression. Kidneyand liver damage are minimal and have not occurred when used as ananesthetic agent. Inhalation exposures at l,000,000 ppb showed nosignificant response in humans exposed for as long as 70 minutes(Casarett and Doull's Toxicology 1985). Studies have not beenperformed on the effects of long-term exposure on humans to lowlevels of 1,1,1 -trichloroethane.

HEAVY METAL CONTAMINATION

As indicated in Table I, elevated concentrations of lead, (2,l60ppm), chromium (420 ppm), cadmium (240 ppm), barium (682 ppm) andmercury (3.l ppm) were detected in the soils on site. Heavy metalsare a potential health concern to local residents due to easyaccess to the former Cianci Property and to persons involved inremediation activities. In addition, the open pit incinerator mayhave contaminated neighboring residential properties with lead.Therefore, the potential exists for dermal, inhalation andingestion exposures to lead contaminated soils on nearbyresidential properties. The potential also exists for theingestion of fish contaminated with mercury. In addition pastexposures to the community metals occurred through contaminateddrinking water and air contaminated by incinerated sludges.

As indicated in Table II-B, elevated concentrations of lead andmercury were detected in three public drinking water wells in 1976. The levels ranged from ND to 0.07 ppm for lead which exceeds thecurrent EPA action level of 15 ppb. However, it should be notedthat there exists some controversy regarding the reliability of thedata analysis. Subsequent sampling in the latter part of 1977 and1978 did not detect lead and mercury contamination of the threewells. The well water samples may have become contaminated duringcollection or laboratory preparation for analysis. Lead was alsodetected in one private well, at 0.03 ppm, which is above the EPAproposed action level of 15 ppb.

Mercury

Chronic mercury toxicity depends on the chemical form (elemental,organic compounds, inorganic salts) and the route and duration ofexposure. Elemental mercury and the inorganic mercury salts aregenerally poorly absorbed orally, while organic mercury salts aregenerally well absorbed orally. Mercury toxicity consists oftremors, personality disorders, excitability, hallucinations anddelirium. Long-term exposure to either organic or inorganicmercury can permanently damage the brain, kidneys, and developingfetuses.

There is no conclusive evidence to indicate that long-term mercury exposure occurred through the public drinking water wells. Mercury has not been shown to be carcinogenic in humans to date.

Lead

Public exposure to lead from the site was most likely to haveoccurred due to incineration of sludges during the l970s. Lead inprivate drinking water wells could potentially be due to leadplumbing fixtures in individual homes and may not be site related. Exposure to high levels of lead can cause the brain and kidneys ofhumans to be badly damaged. Lead exposure can increase bloodpressure in middle-aged men. If a pregnant women is exposed tolead it can be carried to the unborn child and cause prematurebirth, low birth weight, or even spontaneous abortion. Studiesindicate that long term exposure to low levels of lead can causebrain damage and lowered I.Q. in children. Lead interferes withheme biosynthesis, resulting in a reduction of the hemoglobinconcentrations in blood. Although not likely to cause adversehealth effects alone, long term exposure to lead in drinking waterwould contribute significantly to the overall body burden of leadand increase the percentage of exposed individuals at risk fromlead toxicity due to other sources. Such levels could have adverseeffects on the mental development of fetuses exposed via the motherdrinking such water.

There is no conclusive evidence to indicate that long term lead exposure occurred through the public drinking water wells. Although lead has not been shown to be carcinogenic in humans, animal studies suggest that lead should be thought of as a possible carcinogen.

PCBs, DIOXINS, and FURANS

As indicated in Table I, dioxins/furans were documented in soilsand PCBs were identified in soil and ground water on the SRSNEsite.

PCBs, furans and dioxins are easily absorbed through the skin fromcontaminated soils or other materials. The four major toxiceffects of high level exposure to these compounds are chloracne,the wasting syndrome, hepatotoxicity and immunotoxicity. Animalstudies suggest that these compounds become concentrated in humanbreast milk. Although due to limited exposures this is notexpected near SRSNE. Human and animal studies indicate thatmoderate PCB exposure to fetuses can cause miscarriages anddecreased mental development after birth. Also, animals which havebeen exposed to low levels of PCB exposure have developed livercancer. Despite these potential outcomes, adverse effects fromPCBs and dioxins are not likely to occur at this site due to lackof documented exposure routes to nearby populations.

B. HEALTH OUTCOME DATA EVALUATION

A number of health outcomes were evaluated for the Town ofSouthington, including cancer, infant and perinatal mortality,learning disabilities and birth defects. While these analyses maygenerate clues regarding the association between certain chemicalexposures and disease outcomes, it must be stressed that such anassociation is not sufficient to establish a casual link. Manyother factors may also contribute to the onset of disease,including diet, tobacco use, family history, age, race, occupationand socioeconomic factors. In sum, the tools of epidemiology arevery limited in terms of proving causation because of thecomplexity of factors that are involved in the development ofdisease.

l. Tumor Incidence Data

The preliminary review of the tumor (cancer) incidence data for theTown Southington using the Standardized Incidence Rate (SIR)(standardized to eliminate affects of age distributions) indicatesthat there is not a cancer epidemic occurring in Southington. However, cancer rates were statistically elevated for bladdercancer (ages 40-49) and elevated though not statisticallysignificant, for testicular cancer (ages 20-29) for the period l979to l988 (Appendix 2). In Appendix 2 expected rates of bladder andtesticular cancer are estimated based on Connecticut rates and thencompared to actual rates seen in Southington. The terms upper andlower 95 percent confidence intervals give ranges of tumor ratesthat might occur by chance. When a rate falls outside of the 95percent confidence interval, one can assume that the difference inrates has a real cause and did not occur by chance. This is oftenreferred to as a "statistically significant" difference. Bladdercancer is a plausible outcome of exposure to site relatedcompounds, since some solvents such as benzene have been associatedwith that tumor type. One of the original community concerns wasan unusually high number of testicular cancers in young men aroundthe site. The total number of observed tumors (all sites) was lessthan expected for the period l979 to l988. Further analyses intothe elevation of bladder and testicular cancers is presently beingconducted. More detailed spatial and temporal analysis of thetumors is planned.

2. Infant and Perinatal Mortality Rates

Plots of the infant and perinatal mortality rates for Southingtonreflect elevated rates with respect to the state and surroundingtowns for years l949 to l965 (appendix 3). It has been theorizedthat infant mortality rates or miscarriage rates may be sensitiveindicators of adverse environmental exposures. Although thepresent rates are below those of the state and surrounding towns,the historical fluctuation in rates may warrant further detailedinvestigations with respect to past environmental contamination inthe Town of Southington. This may prove to be difficult due to theabsence of environmental data from that time-period.

3. Learning Disabilities

Rates of diagnosed learning disability were evaluated due toconcerns expressed by some citizens living near the site. The rateof learning disabilities in the Southington school district aresimilar to the overall rate for the State of Connecticut (based onrate calculations for learning disabilities in the l2 publicschools in Southington, 1988-1989) (appendix 4). The prevalence oflearning disabilities ranged from 5-l0 per 100 children in specificSouthington schools. The school with the highest rate also has alarge special education program and other children in the area arebussed in to receive the school's services. The detection andreporting of learning disabilities varies widely between towns andindividual schools and therefore it is difficult to assessdifferences based on environmental effects such at chemicalexposure.

4. Birth Defects

Increased rates of birth defects have been associated withproximity to hazardous waste sites. Therefore, the CT State BirthRegistry data was reviewed. Birth defects data was reviewed forthe years l983, l985, and l986 and compared with the state average(Appendix 5). No significant evidence of excess birth defects wereidentified for Southington for this period. In the years reviewed,the observed number of affected infants was less than expected. The Connecticut Birth Defects Registry does not date back prior to1983.

C. COMUNITY CONERNS EVALUATION

The community health concerns identified in the Community Concernssection are addressed either in the Conclusions and Recommendationsection or in the Response to Public Comments (Appendix 6).



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