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Press Release

Drake Chemical

1650 Arch Street Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19103-2029
Phone - 215/814-5100 Fax - 215/814-5102

EPA Environmental News
May 5, 1998

For further information, contact:
David Polish

EPA Says Ombudsman's Concerns Covered, Drake Incinerator to Restart This Week

LOCK HAVEN, PA. ­­The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Region III has released a response to the national ombudsman for the agency's Superfund program. The letter, from EPA Regional Administrator W. Michael McCabe to National Ombudsman Robert J. Martin, answers concerns raised in the ombudsman's review of the Drake Chemical Superfund site here.

Upon request from Arrest the Incinerator Remediation (A.I.R.), a citizen's group, Mr. Martin reviewed the EPA's decision to incinerate contaminated soil at the Drake site and made recommendations to the agency in a final report issued to the agency on April 16, 1998.

Region III generally found that the concerns cited in the ombudsman's report have previously been raised by the A.I.R. group, and the EPA has already addressed these concerns in a variety of ways. The ombudsman raised concerns about: 1) the characterization of the contaminated soil 2) the destruction efficiency of the incinerator 3) the air monitoring on the perimeter of the site and 4) the need for a wet dust collection system to keep dust from leaving the site. Each of these concerns is specifically answered in the response letter.

The Drake Chemical Superfund Site Cleanup Team is scheduled to restart the incinerator on Wednesday May 6, 1998. For the past month, the incinerator has been undergoing maintenance and replacement of the kiln liner.

The incinerator at the Drake Chemical Superfund site has already burned 15 percent of the contaminated soil on site. With this response to the ombudsman's report, EPA Region III continues to have confidence in the cleanup remedy for the Drake Chemical Superfund Site and will complete the processing of the remaining 85 percent of contaminated soil.

The response letter is available to the public upon request from the above contact, or can be viewed at the information repositories in Lock Haven, Pa.

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