::100,000 Tons Of Toxic PCB Being Removed
By Raleigh Chronicle Staff
Friday, April 13, 2007
RALEIGH - Clean-up of an EPA Superfund site that has polluted the Crabtree Lake and Stream in Wake County will finally begin soon, say Wake County officials.
As part of this plan, more than 100,000 tons of PCB contaminated soil and material will be cleaned up. According to the EPA and Wake County, this will be "the first actual cleanup to take place as a result of the Superfund Investigation that began in April 2003."
A company called Ward Transformer in the area is blamed for improperly handling the toxic chemicals. The site encompasses an active electrical transformer building and reconditioning facility constructed in 1964 on 11 acres.
The public is invited to participate in an information session to be held by the EPA this coming Tuesday, April 17th, 2007, at the North Raleigh Hilton, 3415 Wake Forest Road, from 5:00 to 8:00pm.
EPA and state regulators and cleanup contractors will be available at the meeting to provide information and answer questions regarding the Removal Action Plan to be conducted at the Ward Transformer site.
According to the EPA, in addition to the toxic PCB chemicals, dioxins, furans, arsenic, chromium, copper, lead, manganese, and zinc have been found at the site. In addition, elevated concentrations of PCBs have been detected in surface water downstream of the site, posing a threat to lakes and streams and water supplies.
The EPA says that the company is now "in compliance" but that prior to 1972, storm water runoff flow from the facility was uncontrolled.
"Wake County encourages citizens to attend the EPA session to learn about this first step in repairing damage from the Ward facility," said County Commissioner Joe Bryan. Bryan.
In 2005, Bryan created a local PCB Task Force in 2005 that recommended immediate action to rectify the contamination.
"The removal action addresses the Ward site and should prevent further contamination," Bryan said. "But concerns remain for some of our lakes and streams."
State fish consumption advisories remain in effect for Brier Creek, Brier Creek Reservoir, Lake Crabtree and Crabtree Creek, from just above Lake Crabtree to its confluence with the Neuse River.
Wake County has adopted a catch-and-release-only policy for Lake Crabtree and Crabtree Creek just upstream and downstream of the lake.
In 1997, the EPA says that samples were collected for the Expanded Site Inspection by the North Carolina Superfund Section.
Soil at the wooded rear of the Ward property, outside fencing or curbing, contained PCB 1260, manganese, zinc, 1,2,3,7,8 pentachlorodibenzofuran, and octachlorodibenzofuran.
Soil collected along the shoreline of the impoundment showed PCB 1260. Soil near the incinerator contained Aroclor 1260, dioxins, arsenic, chromium, copper, lead, manganese, and zinc.
Aroclor 1260 was also found in sediment samples collected from the unnamed tributary and Little Brier Creek less than a mile downstream of the site.
PCB contamination was found in soil, in the storm water impoundment, and water and sediment collected from the unnamed tributary and Little Brier Creek. ::