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Bonnie Smith, 215-814-5543
WASHINGTON – Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
met with residents of the Lamond Riggs community at LaSalle Elementary School to update the community on the most recent developments in the search for environmental contamination in their neighborhood. Investigators are looking for two contaminants – perchloroethylene (perc) and gasoline.
“Both investigations are actively underway,” said Donald S. Welsh, mid-Atlantic regional administrator.
Chevron is conducting the gasoline investigation under an EPA order. The company is trying to determine the extent of contamination caused by a former Chevron service station located at 5810 Riggs Road, Chillum, Md. – on the border between Maryland and the District of Columbia.
With EPA oversight, Chevron will begin the next phase of soil vapor sampling at 16 additional homes on February 23, weather permitting. Originally, 24 homes were targeted for this sampling; however, Chevron has received permission from only 16 property owners to date.
Chevron is moving forward with plans to expand the existing remediation system at the service station. This update is scheduled to be completed in the spring.
In addition, Chevron will install 39 permanent groundwater monitoring wells and two permanent soil vapor monitoring wells in the residential area and shopping center parking lot.
A second site investigation, for perc, a chemical commonly used in dry cleaning and metal degreasing, in the same Lamond Riggs area, has been undertaken by EPA’s Superfund program. This assessment seeks to identify the extent of an underground plume of perc and to identify the party liable for the contamination.
To date, EPA has tested for soil vapor, groundwater, and indoor air. No responsible party has been identified for the perc contamination. EPA has undertaken the assessment and will seek reimbursement after a responsible party is found.
The most recent phase of the perc investigation is reporting the results of the summer indoor air sampling in 23 homes to those residents. Next, these 23 homes will re-tested this winter for a seasonal comparison.
This is the seventh public meeting EPA has held to share progress reports on the investigations with the community since Oct. 2001, when EPA was asked by elected officials to undertake the original gasoline investigation.
EPA will continue to work with the community to share information. Two websites have been created so citizens can track the progress of the investigations at www.epaosc.net/chillumgas and www.epaosc.net/chillumperc. The EPA order is at: http://www.epa.gov/reg3wcmd/chev7003.htm.
Vance Evans, a Superfund community involvement coordinator is available to respond to citizen inquiries. He can be reached at 215-814-5526 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.