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EPA Inspection for PCB-containing lighting ballasts
PS 13 and PS 358, Brooklyn, New York

More Information

EPA's PCBs homepage.

Guidance on PCB-Containing Fluorescent Light Ballasts

On Saturday, January 22, 2011, EPA conducted an inspection at PS 13 and PS 358, which share a building, to look at lighting ballasts that may contain PCBs and determine if they have leaked in the past or are currently leaking.   See below for a chart containing the results of samples taken during this inspection.

If a lighting ballast is leaking PCBs above a regulatory level of 50 parts per million, federal law requires the immediate removal and disposal of the ballast and disposal of any PCB-contaminated materials at an EPA-approved facility.

A total of seven samples were taken from five rooms. Each sample showed results above the regulatory limit.

EPA continues to strongly recommend that the City of New York develop a plan for assessing and addressing leaking ballasts in its schools city-wide.

These recommendations are consistent with EPA’s national guidance recommending that schools take steps to reduce potential exposures to PCBs from older fluorescent lighting fixtures.

Over the past several weeks, EPA has also released results from two other schools that it inspected, PS 53 in Staten Island and PS 11 in Brooklyn.  In each space where samples were taken in PS 53, EPA found one or more results that were above 50 parts per million.  Twenty two of the total of 33 samples taken showed results above the regulatory limit.   In PS 11, 18 out of the total 28 samples taken showed results above the regulatory limit.

PS 13 and PS 358 Brooklyn
January 22, 2011 Sampling Results

Location

Fixture No.

Sample location

Sample Results  mg/kg (PPM)

PCB Aroclor

Old/New Ballast

Ballast leaking

Description of Material

Room 251

3

Ballast Wiring

180

1016

Old

Yes

Tar on Wire

Room 350

2

Ballast

560

1016

Old

Yes

Tar Oozing from Corner

Room 340

2

Ballast

70

1016

Old

No

Residue

Room 339

1

Ballast

340

1016

Old

Yes

Tar Oozing from Seam

Room 339

4

Ballast

390

1016

Old

Yes

Oil Drip

Room 330

1

Ballast

190

1016

Old

Yes

Tar Oozing from Seam

Room 330

3

Ballast

230

1016

Old

Yes

Tar in Seam and Side

 

 

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