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Shenandoah Road Groundwater Contamination
East Fishkill, New York

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Cecilia Echols (212) 637-3678

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EPA added the Shenandoah Road Groundwater Contamination site in the hamlet of Hopewell Junction, Town of East Fishkill, New York (Dutchess County) to the Superfund National Priorities List on June 14, 2001 after contamination was found in a number of residential drinking water wells in the area. Tests showed that 60 residential drinking water wells in the area exceeded maximum levels for tetrachloroethene (PCE) and/or trichloroethene (TCE), harmful volatile organic chemicals used in industrial solvents. PCE is considered a potential human carcinogen by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the levels detected during testing indicated an immediate threat to public health.

EPA and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation identified a former metal cleaning facility within the Shenandoah Road community as the source of several volatile organic chemicals which contaminated the underlying ground water. One major contamination source at the facility was a 1,200 gallon metal septic tank that contained waste solvents.

EPA initiated an emergency response to the contamination in June 2000, and supplied the 60 affected homes with bottled water and installed water treatment systems at each home. EPA removed the septic tank and 4,800 tons of contaminated soil as part of cleanup efforts. Through two orders with EPA, IBM, a potentially responsible party at the site, agreed to maintain and improve residential drinking water systems, remove more soil, study the contamination and provide a permanent source of drinking water.

In 2002, EPA, with IBM's assistance, completed the cleanup work at the former metal facility.

In March 2009, as part of IBM's efforts to install a permanent source of drinking water, a public water supply system began operation within the Shenandoah Town Water District. To date, 120 homes are receiving public water and are no longer on private wells.

Under the second order with EPA, IBM is performing a remedial investigation within the Shenandoah Road study area. This investigation covers a variety of media: groundwater, surface water and sediments. EPA is overseeing these efforts.

EPA's indoor air testing results within the Shenandoah Road community show no public health issues concerning indoor air quality.


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