Jackson Steel Plant Downgraded To Harmless

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The Jackson Steel manufacturing plant that is located at 435 First St. in the Village of Mineola has been officially downgraded from a Class 02 to a Class 04, meaning the vacant Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Superfund site is no longer a significant threat to the public’s health or environment.

According to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYS DEC), hazardous waste disposal at Jackson Steel was addressed by the implementation of a site-wide remedy, which included excavation of contaminated soil, installation and operation of a soil vapor extraction system and groundwater treatment via in-situ chemical oxidation.

The management of remaining contamination, including any required monitoring, will be addressed under the site management plan (SMP), which consists of a vapor intrusion management plan and an institutional control implementation and assurance plan. An environmental easement will be additionally recorded.

According to a report from the EPA, the site functioned as a “roll form metal shapes” manufacturing facility from 1970-91. Degreasers, including tetrachloroethylene (PCE), trichloroethylene (TCE) and 1,1,1-trichloroethane, were used at the facility until March 1985. During a 1981 inspection of the facility by the county’s Department of Health, improper spill control at the waste storage area was reported.

In 2002, elevated PCE levels were detected in a billiards hall and daycare center near the site. The EPA’s emergency response team installed vacuum extraction systems under the buildings to prevent any contaminants from entering the structures in case the soil and ground water under the buildings were the source. An investigation in May 2003 determined PCE and TCE detected in the indoor air of the former daycare center could be, at least partly, attributed to vapor intrusion from the soil underneath the building.

After additional investigations in 2004 and 2005, the EPA provided $2.85 million to perform treatability studies and a groundwater investigation work related to the lower aquifer, the report said. The EPA allocated an additional $1 million to commence remedial action.

Additional reporting by Rich Forestano

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