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Navy Ships Parts Control Center

Current Site Information

EPA Region 3 (Mid-Atlantic)

Cumberland County

EPA ID# PA3170022104

19th Congressional District

Last Update: January 2015

Other Names

USN Ships Parts Center
Navy Ships Parts Control Center
Naval Inventory Control Point
Naval Support Activity
Naval Support Station

Current Site Status

Site 3 Burn Pits: Ground Water:
 A  ROD for Site 3 Groundwater was signed on September 2004.  Due to the presence of contaminants, especially DNAPL (Dense Non-Aqueous Phase Liquid) deep within fractured bedrock, attainment of site groundwater cleanup goals may be difficult.  In Situ Chemical Oxidation with Land Use Controls (LUCs) was the remedy selected for this site.  The chemical oxidation injection activities were done in two phases:  Phase I (March - May 2004) and Phase II (August - October 2004).  Initial sampling results indicated reduced VOC concentrations, although cleanup levels have not been reached.  In 2005, two rounds of sampling were performed and sampling results indicate that the contaminants of concern for this site remained at concentrations above the cleanup levels.  Annual monitoring is taking place to further understand contaminant distribution and concentration trends. In order to understand the vertical distribution of the plume more completely, 3 deep wells were installed in late 2010 and revealed levels of VOC's exceeding the MCL at Site 3.  Due to the levels of contamination found in these deep groundwater wells, additional wells were installed in 2012.  EPA and the Navy are currently discussing a Technical Impracticability Waiver for the Site.  Preliminary discussions also include additional injections for the shallow groundwater at Site 3.  

Site 9: Storm Water Drainage Ditch: Soil Feasibility Study:
Site 9 is a 1.5 mile long storm water drainage ditch which has been impacted with contaminated sediments containing PCBs, PAHS, and metals.  The majority of this risk posed by this site is to ecological receptors such as birds, invertebrates, and small mammals.  In July 2006, a pilot study was done to evaluate the effectiveness of in-situ bioremediation.  The pilot study was determined to be unsuccessful which has led to additional discussion of how Site 9 will be remediated.  As a result, a draft feasibility study (FS) addendum was completed in 2009. The Navy, EPA, and PADEP have been working closely with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (US FWS) to determine the most ecologically friendly strategy to address this diverse habitat.  A public meeting was held on July 22nd, 2009 to present the proposed remedy which consists on hot spot removal actions and various forms of stream stabilization.  As part of this remedy, LUC’s will also be placed on site 9.  The Record of Decision was signed in September 2010. 

Site 8 Ore Storage Area: 
Site 8 is comprised of a large open area of approximately 20 acres.  Historically, Site 8 had been used for the storage of ore.  Soil sampling at Site 8 had indicated elevated levels of arsenic, manganese, and nickel that pose risk to human health and the environment.  The final Record of Decision (RoD) describing the Remedial Action for the site was signed in September 2009.  This decision document calls for the removal of wastes that will allow for industrial use.  A Land Use Control (LUC) Remedial Design will be prepared as part of the process to restrict residential use at the site.  The removal action has been completed and land use controls are currently in place.  

Site 5 Golf Course Landfill:
Sampling results indicated that soil had elevated levels of TCE and metals exceeding EPA's risked based criteria.  The IR Program Team decided to conduct a removal action to excavate the contaminated soil in order to be protective of human health and the environment.  The site was closed out with a no further action ROD signed in early 2009.  Groundwater sampling results have showed no unacceptable risk.  A no further action consensus letter for groundwater was signed on July 23rd, 2009.     

Site 11 Ingot Storage Area (Areas 413, 414, 606, and 317):

The final ROD was signed for Site 11 in September 2007. A pilot study was conducted at Site 11 (Area 413) to determine if an encapsulation technology (Encapco) is effective in immobilizing lead contaminated soils in the former lead ingot storage areas.  Results from the pilot study showed that lead bioavailability concentrations were not reduced through the Encapco process.  As a result, the Navy plans to excavate and dispose the impacted/treated soils within Area 413.  A time-critical removal action for Area 414 of Site 11 was completed in December 2005.  Additional removal actions were completed for Areas 317, 413, and 606 in spring 2007. 

Site Description

The 824-acre Naval Support Activity Mechanicsburg, formerly known as the Naval Inventory Control Point (NAVICP) located in Mechanicsburg, Cumberland County, Pennsylvania (7 miles West of Harrisburg PA.  In the 1940s, NAVICP provided global management of repair parts for Navy ships.  The base undertook additional inventory management responsibilities such as managing conventional ammunition, providing services, and providing maintenance and engineering for the installation.  By 1943, 57 semi-permanent warehouses were built.  In the early 1950s, NAVICP became a repository for a variety of metal ores received as war payment and reprimand.  In Fall 1998, host activities at NAVICP (e.g., environmental and safety services, facilities, and engineering) were transferred to Commander in Charge of Atlantic Fleet (CINCLANTFLT) which resulted in an installation name change to Naval Support Activity (NSA), Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania.  At this time, NAVICP became a tenant command.

The Navy conducted several investigations from 1984 to 1994.  Upon doing so, six potential areas of contamination were identified:  Carter Road Landfill, Building 904 Landfill, Ball Road Landfill and Burn Pits, Golf Course Landfill, Buildings 403/404 Solvent Disposal Area, and the Storm Water Drainage Ditch (SWDD).  The 4.5-acre Carter Road Landfill, was used for the disposal of construction rubble, medical supplies, and gas mask canisters from 1950 to 1962.  The 1-acre Building 904 Landfill, was used during the 1950s to dispose of construction debris and medical supplies.  Ball Road Landfill and Burn Pits, was used from the mid-1940s until 1977.  Wastes were dumped into the two pits over 7.5-acres, doused with gasoline and burned on a weekly basis. Wastes included paints, varnishes, gasoline, oils, medical supplies, paint and solvent containers, asbestos ash, and materials contaminated with polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB).  The Golf Course Landfill was a 4-acre area where wastes were dumped and occasionally burned from 1945 to 1946. The Building 403/404 Solvent Disposal Area is the railroad track located between two buildings in the South-Central portion of the base.  During the 1950s, hazardous wastes, including PCB-contaminated soils, and trichloroethene, were poured directly onto the tracks.  The SWDD area receives the majority of the storm water runoff from the base.  The drainage ditch is approximately 1.5 miles long and discharges into Trindle Run (a Pennsylvania cold water fishery) which then flows into the Conodoguinet Creek.  The SWDD was primarily contaminated by a storm sewer system (AOC-9A) that was discharging PCB's from a transformer handling area to the ditch.  Approximately 9,000 people obtain drinking water from public and private wells within 4 miles of the sources at NSA.

Site Responsibility

The site is being addressed through Federal actions.

NPL Listing History

Proposed Date: 01/18/94
Final Date: 05/31/94

Threats and Contaminants

Navy studies identified numerous hazardous substances in the soil and in the groundwater in all six areas.  Soil and groundwater are contaminated with arsenic; heavy metals including mercury, manganese, lead, and cadmium; pesticides; polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs); Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs); and polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs).   Sediments are contaminated with metals, PAHs, and PCBs.  Touching or ingesting contaminated soil, ground water, or sediments could pose a health risk.

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

Cleanup Progress

In 1991, a partial removal action in the first 1/4 mile of the SWDD was conducted in which 5,744 tons of PCB-contaminated sediment was removed.  A second removal of 1,305 tons of PCB-contaminated sediment was conducted in 1993 at three hot spots in the lower portion of the ditch.  Contaminated sediments were disposed of at a RCRA permitted facility in Model City, NY.  In 1993, the Navy initiated on-site bioremediation as its selected remedy for contaminated soil in the Burn Pits.  However, there were several problems with the project and treatment system and as a result, the Navy terminated the cleanup contract for convenience in 1994.  Approximately 20,000 cubic yards of contaminated soil were removed from the pits while another 10,000 cubic yards remain in one pit.  Bioremediation activities at the Ball Road Landfill and Burn Pits Area, as well as the removal actions at the Storm Water Drainage Ditch have reduced some of the risk of exposure to hazardous wastes. 

The Navy, EPA, PADEP, along with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (US FWS) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) developed a work plan to investigate ecological risk screening base wide at ten sites.  Field work began in Spring 1997 for Step 1 of the ecological risk assessment process.  The draft report has been submitted and reviewed by the Navy, EPA and PADEP.  Constituents of Potential Concern (COPCs) were identified and indicated a potential for ecological effects.  EPA requested that food-web modeling be performed for all identified COPCs.  A Phase 2 ecological risk assessment for food web modeling was initiated and a draft workplan has been reviewed by the agencies. EPA, PADEP, and US FWS have reviewed and commented on the Base wide IR Site Ecological Risk Screening (BIRSERS) and Technical Memo Parts I and II.  The BIRSERS document was finalized in January 2003.

The Navy, EPA, and the State initiated site inspections at four sites (Sites 12, 13, 14, and 15). Sampling results indicate that Site 13 would not require further remedial actions.  The Navy, EPA and PADEP plan on conducting Removal Actions (i.e., excavation/off-site disposal) for Sites 14 and 15.  Contaminated soils will be excavated to mitigate lead (at Site 14) and PCB (at Site 15) and other metals in the soil from migrating to ground water.  Final determination for any response actions at Site 12 is pending on the results of the Phase 2 ecological risk assessment work.

The Navy, EPA, and the State have actively implemented partnering at the site.  This has led to the reevaluation of the bioremediation activities at Site 3 (Ball Road Landfill and Burn Pits).  In September 1998, a removal action was conducted at Site 3 to remove approximately 25,000 cubic yards of contaminated soil from this site.  The purpose of the removal action was to prevent migration of contaminants to groundwater and prevent maintenance workers from coming into contact with the soil.

The Navy, EPA, and the State issued a proposed plan for Site 1 (Carter Road Landfill) in October 1997.  A public meeting was held and no comments were received.  A draft ROD for Site 1 was reviewed and finalized.  Based on uncovered new information for Site 1, a different remedy (Institutional Controls) was subsequently selected and a new proposed plan was issued for Site 1 in August 1998.  A public meeting was held on September 2, 1998.  No comments were received during the public comment period or public meeting. A ROD for Site 1 was signed on September 30, 1998.

EPA, PADEP, and the Navy completed two Five Year Review Inspections on January 27, 2003 for Site 1 Ball Road Landfill and Site 3 Burn Pits (soil).  The inspections were conducted to determine if the remedy selected was still protective of human health and the environment.  Land use controls (restricting the use of the land to uses that will not expose residents to contamination) were selected as the remedy at both sites.  Both sites continue to be restricted to industrial use.  Five-year inspections are required under CERCLA for properties which remain contaminated above risk based screening levels suitable for unrestricted residential use.  The Navy submitted the Five Year Review Report to EPA and PADEP for Review and Comment.  EPA concurred that the remedies were still in place and remained protective of human health and the environment in December 2003. The second five year review was finalized in January 2009. On January 2014, EPA concurred on the NSA Mechanicsburg 3rd Five-Year Review (FYR). The FYR process involved conducting an inspection of the Land Use Controls (LUCs) of OU-1 (Ball Road Landfill and Burn Pits, Soil), OU-3 (Carter Road Landfill), OU-4 (Ball Road Landfill and Burn Pits, Groundwater), OU-7 (Stormwater Drainage Ditch), and OU-15 (Ore Storage Area). EPA concurred with the Navy’s determination that the remedies for these OUs are protective of human health and the environment. EPA also evaluated the Government Performance and Results Act (GPRA) measures for the above-listed OUs and determined the status of the environmental indicators as follows: a) Human Health: Current Human Exposure Controlled; b) Groundwater Migration: Groundwater Migration Under Control.

In Early 2009 following a removal action, the Navy along with EPA and PADEP determined that there are no remaining unacceptable risks at the Former Golf Course Landfill (Site 5).  Decision documents have been prepared for Site 5 allowing unlimited use and unrestricted exposure.  The Navy and stakeholders have recently finalized Decision Documents for both Sites 8 and 9.  All Sites have been addressed with a Decision Document.  Sites with waste left in place will still be subject to 5-Year Reviews.


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