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National Presto Industries, Inc.

Site Information
Contact Information

Community Involvement Coordinator
Susan Pastor (pastor.susan@epa.gov)
312-353-1325 or 800-621-8431, ext. 31325

Remedial Project Manager
Howard Caine (caine.howard@epa.gov)
312-353-9685 or 800-621-8431, ext. 39685

Repositories

(where to view written records)

Chippewa Falls Public Library
105 W. Central St.
Chippewa Falls, WI

Background

The 320-acre National Presto Industries site was owned by the United States Government War Assets Administration in the 1940s and manufactured radar tubes and ordnance chemicals until 1945. NPI purchased the property and manufactured household appliances, outboard motors, and defense-related products. From 1954 to 1980, only the shells were manufactured there.

The most environmentally significant waste that was generated was waste forge compound, which was a lubricant used in the forging of 105mm shells. Contaminants of concern were 1,1,1-trichloroethane (TCA) and trichloroethylene (TCE). Wastewater discharged to Lagoon No. 1 contained the compound, causing ground-water contamination. Between 1966 and 1970, the compound was also landfilled on site.

The NPI site lies almost entirely within the city of Eau Claire and abuts the unincorporated town of Hallie. A 350-acre area was affected by confirmed on-site sources at National Presto. As a temporary solution, EPA ordered the company to put 174 homes and 40 businesses in Hallie on bottled water in 1989. EPA issued a plan (called a record of decision) in 1990 for a permanent water system.

In 1991, a second record of decision was signed to clean up ground water by removing on-site source areas, treating and discharging to the Chippewa River.

In 1996, the final sitewide record of decision was issued.

During the cleanup, EPA concluded that the National Presto site was also the source of ground water contamination at the nearby Eau Claire Municipal Well Field site.

In 2009, EPA changed the ground water cleanup standards detailed in its 1996 record of decision. The changes are outlined in a document called an "Explanation of Significant Differences."[Explanation of Significant Differences (PDF) (12pp, 560K) December 2009]

Originally, EPA used Wisconsin's Preventative Action Limits, or PALs, as its cleanup goals rather than the state's Enforcement Standards described in Wisconsin Administrative Code NR 140. Wisconsin NR 140 uses PALs as an indicator of potential ground water contamination problems. It also uses the Enforcement Standards as a compliance standard for human health and welfare concerns. Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources has also found in many cases that achieving PALs is not technically or economically feasible. The Enforcement Standards now serve as the ground water cleanup goals for the site.

Technical Assistance Grant (TAG) and Community Advisory Group (CAG) are two ways the community can get involved. Learn more about CAGs and TAGs

Site Updates || Technical Documents || Five-Year Reviews || Legal Agreements


You will need the free Adobe Reader to view some of the files on this page. See EPA's PDF page to learn more.

Site Updates

September 2012

EPA has completed a status review of the cleanup. This type of review is required at least every five years where the cleanup is complete but hazardous waste remains managed on-site. These reviews are done to ensure that the cleanup continues to protect people and the environment.

The review included:

The review found that the cleanup continues to protect people and the environment. This was the fourth five-year review for National Presto Industries site.  The next scheduled review will be in 2017.

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Technical Documents

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Five-Year Reviews

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Legal Agreements

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