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EPA Proposes to Add Chem-Fab Site in Pa. to Superfund List

Release Date: 9/19/2007
Contact Information: David Sternberg (215) 814-5548, sternberg.david@epa.gov

PHILADELPHIA (September 19, 2007) The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today proposed the addition of the former Chem-Fab plant site to the Superfund National Priorities List (NPL). The site is located on North Broad Street in Doylestown, Bucks County, Pa.

The NPL is a national list of sites where hazardous contaminants could impact public health and/or the environment. NPL sites undergo a thorough investigation to determine the full nature and extent of the contamination. EPA or the parties responsible for the contamination will then address whatever risks the site poses to human health or the environment.

Once a site is proposed for inclusion on the NPL, there is a 60-day comment period. A final decision on listing will be made after EPA has evaluated and responded to all the public comments in writing. Today EPA is adding seven new sites to the NPL, and proposing the addition of twelve more, including the Chem-Fab site.

Chem-Fab operated an electroplating facility on the site from 1965 to 1978 and a metal processing plant there from 1965 to 1994. Ground water beneath the former Chem-Fab facility and adjacent properties is contaminated with trichloroethane (TCE) and hexavalent chromium. TCE was used as an industrial solvent and is considered to be a probable human carcinogen. Concentrations of TCE exceeding federal drinking water standards were detected in residential and municipal wells within one-half mile of the site.

In 1991, EPA connected eight residential wells and two businesses to a public water supply due to contamination of their wells. A public water supply well was also closed due to the presence of contamination. From 1994 to 1995, EPA removed and disposed of 117 drums of wastes and an additional 8,400 gallons of liquid waste under the Superfund removal program.

EPA will hold a public meeting to discuss the proposed listing at 7:00 p.m., October 16, at the Doylestown Borough Hall. For more information about Superfund sites, go to: http://www.epa.gov/superfund/sites/npl/npl.htm