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Millsboro TCE site proposed for Superfund list

Release Date: 09/23/2009
Contact Information: Roy Seneca seneca.roy@epa.gov, 215-814-5567

PHILADELPHIA (September 23, 2009) -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today proposed the addition of the Millsboro TCE site in Millsboro, Sussex County, Del. to the Superfund National Priorities List (NPL).

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

Once a site has been proposed for the NPL, there is a 60-day comment period. EPA could consider the site for final listing after it evaluates and responds to all the public comments in writing.

The Millsboro TCE site is an area of trichloroethyene (TCE) contamination located at the intersection of Wharton Street and East Dupont Highway in Millsboro. The source of the contamination is a former poultry vaccine manufacturing building that was demolished in 1999. TCE was used in the manufacturing process and was released to underground tanks and the onsite septic system. Tank sludge samples from the plant contained elevated levels of TCE.

Millsboro’s two public wells are contaminated with TCE above EPA’s Safe Drinking Water Act maximum contaminant level. Well water is being filtered to make it safe to drink. The town supplies water to approximately 3,000 people. The state of Delaware referred the site to EPA because it does not have the resources to complete remediation of the site and to continue maintenance of the town’s water treatment system.

For Federal Register notices and supporting documents for this and other proposed sites, please visit http://www.epa.gov/superfund/sites/npl/current.htm.