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North Penn Area 12

Fact Sheet: May 1995


In January 1995, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region III (EPA) sampled 63 homes in the area of the Transicoil Superfund Site. We tested the well water at the homes for forty-one volatile organic carbons (VOCs). VOCs are substances which easily evaporate into the air.

We compared the levels of each substance detected in the samples with the Maximum Contaminant Level for that substance. The Maximum Contaminant Level is the highest level of a contaminant allowed to be present in water delivered to public water users.

We detected TCE above Maximum Contaminant Levels in 13 of the 63 homes sampled. The Maximum Contaminant Level for TCE is 5.0 parts per billion. See box in next column.

We notified those residents whose levels of TCE exceeded the Maximum Contaminant Levels on April 26, 1995 and suggested that they use bottled water until we can take care of the contamination problem. We have contacted the parties potentially responsible for the contamination and requested that they provide the affected residents with carbon filtration systems or connect them to public water. If the potentially responsible parties refuse to take action, EPA will consider implementing the necessary measures to make sure that the affected residents have safe drinking water.

Four of the 13 affected parties had been supplied with carbon filters to eliminate TCE under a previous site action. For those parties, only the samples taken before the filter showed levels of TCE above the Maximum Contaminant Level. The remaining affected residents, who had not been supplied with filters after the previous sampling round, either had not been tested before or initially had showed levels of TCE below the Maximum Contaminant Level.


The Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL) is the largest amount of a substance allowed in public water. It is measured in parts per billion. By comparison, one part per billion is equal to one second in 32 years.


In addition to the well water, we have sampled soils, monitoring wells, surface water, and sediments in the area of the site. We have conducted all of this testing as part of the Remedial Investigation of the site. A Remedial Investigation determines the type and extent of contamination at the site (for example, TCE), the media affected (for example, ground water in residential wells), and the degree of the contamination (for example, TCE levels above the Maximum Contaminant Level in residential wells). After evaluating all the sampling results, we will organize the information into the Remedial Investigation Report for the site and make the report available to the public.


If you have questions about the site or your sampling results, please contact:

Remedial Project Manager
Patrick McManus
(215) 814-3198

Community Involvement Coordinator
Richard Kuhn
(215) 814-3063

U.S. EPA Region III
1650 Arch St.
Philadelphia, PA 19103-2029

We would be happy to answer your questions by phone, letter, or in person.

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