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ATSDR Press Room

ATSDR Releases Findings Regarding the Garvey Elevator Site and Public Invited to Comment

Hastings, Nebraska

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

ATLANTA, GA – The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) released today its public health assessment evaluating past, present and future potential health impact from chemicals in the groundwater plume emanating from the Garvey Elevator Superfund Site in Hastings, NE. ATSDR welcomes comments on this public comment release until November 20, 2015.

ATSDR has concluded that some drinking water wells near the Garvey Elevator site contained chemicals at concentrations high enough to have harmed people’s health in the past. Fifteen wells tested contained carbon tetrachloride at levels greater than 40 parts carbon tetrachloride per billion parts water (ppb). Residents, especially children less than one year old, who drank water from those wells were at increased risk for liver damage. The amount of carbon tetrachloride in some of the private wells was high enough to cause increased risk of liver cancer with 15 years of exposure to untreated water.

ATSDR cannot currently conclude whether onsite drinking water could have harmed workers' and visitors' health in the past because adequate sampling data was not available. However, ATSDR did conclude that the past concentration of carbon tetrachloride in municipal water (prior to 1997) is unlikely to harm people's health. The previously affected municipal wells are no longer in use.

Currently, with the exception of one residence, all impacted and potentially impacted residential/business wells near the contaminated plume have been connected to the municipal water system. The residence not connected to the municipal water system was fitted with a whole-house carbon filtration system. The home is not occupied at this time.

It is possible that additional wells near the outskirts of the plume and wells near the plume's leading edge will become contaminated. ATSDR recommends monitoring of these wells for contamination. Appropriate actions should continue to be taken to ensure the contaminant concentrations in some wells don't become high enough to harm people's health in the present and future.

ATSDR will respond to written comments received during the public comment period in the final public health assessment. ATSDR will not list names of those who submit comments. However, if ATSDR receives a U.S. Freedom of Information Act request, ATSDR might be required to release the names.

ATSDR's report is available at

A copy is also available at the Hastings Public Library located at 517 West 4th Street in Hastings.

Send comments to or mail to:

Attention: Rolanda Morrison
RE: Garvey Elevator Site, Hastings, NE
ATSDR Records Center; 4770 Buford Highway, NE (MS F-09)
Atlanta, GA 30341-3717

For more information about ATSDR’s work at the Garvey Elevator site in Hastings, NE, call 1-800-CDC-INFO (1-800-232-4636) or email


ATSDR, a federal public health agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, evaluates the potential for adverse human health effects of exposure to hazardous substances in the environment.

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Related PHA & HC For this Press Release

Garvey Elevator Groundwater Contamination Site
-Evaluation of the Vapor Intrusion Pathway
Document Date: 7/7/2017 - HC  [PDF - 5770 KB]

Garvey Elevator NPL Site
Document Date: 1/12/2016 - PHA  [PDF - 3008 KB]

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Related News Releases For Hastings, Nebraska, USA


ATSDR to Host Community Meeting for Garvey Grain Elevator, West Highway 6 and 281 Sites, NE
Release Date: Monday, September 18, 2006
The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) will host a public meeting on September 27, 2006 in Hastings, Nebraska, to gather community health concerns related to the Garvey Grain Elevator and West Highway 6 and 281 sites.

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Contact Us:
  • Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
    4770 Buford Hwy NE
    Atlanta, GA 30341-3717 USA
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  • New Hours of Operation
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Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, 4770 Buford Hwy NE, Atlanta, GA 30341
Contact CDC: 800-232-4636 / TTY: 888-232-6348

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