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Tranguch Gasoline

EPA Region 3 (Mid-Atlantic)

Luzerne County

EPA ID# PA0001409671

11 Congressional District

Last Update: January 2008

Other Names


Current Site Status

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is cleaning up the Tranguch Gasoline site. Since 1999, the EPA has been systematically air testing all the homes in the vicinity of the gasoline spill for benzene and other air contaminants associated with gasoline. The agency has been installing sewer vent traps to prevent vapors from entering the homes, or carbon filter units to continuously filter the air in certain homes. The EPA has also installed new sewer lines, a groundwater treatment system and a vapor extraction system in the vicinity of the spill. These systems have effectively cut off any pathway for gasoline vapors to enter homes. To date, over 29 million gallsons of grandwater has been collected and treated. The EPA, PADEP and the Army Corps of Engineers are evaluating the progress of the cleanup and the impact of other nearby sources of groundwater contamination on the plue of gasoline from the Tranguch facility. Assessment and closure of monitoring wells that are no longer required to monitor the plue is an ongoing process. In response to an order from the City of Hazelton, demolition of the former Tranguch Garage building began the week of October 16, 2007. Sampling of select monitoring wells and indoor airs continues by the PADEP.

Site Description

The site is located in the vicinity of 22nd St. in the northeast section of the City of Hazleton and the adjacent portion Hazle Township. Between September 1991 and January 1994, several residents complained about gasoline odors in their homes. The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP) determined that the vapors were associated with an underground gasoline spill. Gasoline vapors from the spill had entered the sanitary sewer system, making their way into residents' homes through their sewer line connections. There are approximately 400 homes in the affected area.
Site Responsibility
Cleanup of the site is the responsibility of federal and state governments.
NPL Listing History
Not on the National Priorities List (NPL).

Threats and Contaminants

Gasoline was present in the Black Creek, down-gradient from the site, in both visible sheen and weathered product form. EPA conducted sampling of the surface water to confirm the presence of gasoline. Subsurface sampling by EPA revealed contaminated water in the area of a mine pool near the plume. This mine pool overflows into Black Creek during storm events. EPA contractors have conducted indoor air analysis of identified homes that may be impacted by the site. Where there had been air quality concerns in residences either PADEP or EPA have installed ventilation systems. The air contaminants of concern are benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylene (BTEX).

Contaminant descriptions and risk factors are available from the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, an arm of the CDC.

Cleanup Progress

This site is being addressed under EPA's Oil Pollution Act and funded by the U.S. Coast Guard. EPA installed an underflow dam in Black Creek to collect petroleum products on the surface. The dam was an immediate measure to provide an interim cleanup of the stream.

The EPA is also replaced or relined the cracked sewer lines in the area to prevent gasoline-contaminated groundwater and vapors from infiltrating the sewers. The agency also installed a groundwater treatment system, and a vapor extraction system in the trenches that have been dug for the sewers. These systems pump out and treat contaminated groundwater and underground vapors, thereby gradually eliminating the source of the problem.

The EPA has also tackled the problem from inside residents' homes by installing vent traps which prevent vapors from entering the homes from the sewer lines. Careful screening of all homes to remove other sources of BTEX has resulted in all properties testing below the Pennsylvania and Federal action levels The EPA will continue to re-test selected homes to ensure that the contaminant levels stay below the site standard.

Final steps are being taken to investigate the mine pool underlying a portion of the site. To date, no significant contamination has been found in the flooded mine.

This summer, the USEPA sent each property owner a comprehensive report. These reports detailed all actions taken at the owner's home. They included a health statement that the resident was no longer being affected by the gasoline spill.


Site Contacts

Region 3 | Mid-Atlantic Cleanup | Mid-Atlantic Superfund |EPA Home | EPA Superfund Homepage

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