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Landowners Agree to Clean Up Bethany Road Pesticide Dump Site

Release Date: 07/01/2009
Contact Information: Andy Smith, EPA/Seattle, 206-553-1750, smith.andy@epa.gov; Mark MacIntyre, EPA/Seattle, 206-553-7302, macintyre.mark@epa.gov

(Seattle, Wash – July 1, 2009) Property owners in Grandview, Washington, will clean up an illegal pesticide dumpsite and investigate a possible second site under an Order signed with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The owners’ cleanup contractor is expected to complete the work - under EPA supervision - over the next 45 days.

According to Andy Smith, EPA On-Scene Coordinator, the newly signed Administrative Order on Consent clears the way for the final phase of the cleanup.

“This is good news for the local community,” said Smith. “Up to this point our work has mostly been focused on investigating and stabilizing the situation. Now the property owners will remove all containers and other waste from the site, install monitoring wells to check if any contamination has migrated offsite in the groundwater and investigate a possible second burial site.”

Acting on a tip, EPA, the Washington Department of Ecology and the Washington Department of Agriculture launched the site investigation on March 17, 2009. Close to 100 containers have been exhumed from the site thus far and many contained contaminants such as used motor and lubricating oil, heavy metals, pesticides and herbicides. The dump also contained miscellaneous solid waste.

In addition to conducting the preliminary excavation and container removal, EPA has been offering drinking water well sampling to interested neighbors down gradient from the site.

So far, three homeowners have come forward and agreed to have their wells sampled. EPA expects to have preliminary sampling results available for both the homeowners and the public by the second week in July. The investigation team does not expect to see cause for concern in the results, due to the distance of the wells from the site.

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