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Escambia Wood Treating Company Site Video Transcript

Hi, I am Tonya Spencer, community involvement coordinator for the United States Environmental Protection Agency Region 4 in Atlanta, Georgia. I am also the community involvement coordinator for the Escambia Wood Treating Company site here in Pensacola, Florida. We are here today to take you inside the site to address some of your concerns about air and health and safety. So let's get started.

Hi, my name's Erik Spalvins. I'm the EPA project manager at the Escambia Wood Treating Company Superfund site. I'd like to take a few minutes to explain what we're doing to protect the health and safety of the workers and community. During the cleanup operations here at the Escambia site, one of the concerns we share with the community is to control the dust during the construction operations here at Escambia.

As you can see, there is a lot of equipment operating behind me, and in Pensacola, there's often a lot of wind. The construction crew has been specially trained to minimize the creation of dusty conditions during their work activities. The spraying and misting of water will be the primary measure used to suppress the levels of dust in the air. If dust is observed for one minute or more, additional control measures will be implemented, such as the reapplication of water, applying dust suppression agents, using tarps to cover the exposed areas, and limiting or temporarily stopping soil handling operations. As an added precaution, any vehicle that has been in a contaminated zone and is wanting to leave the site has to come here through our decon pad, and they will be decontaminated with a pressure wash of the wheels and the undercarriage of the vehicle to prevent the contaminated materials from entering the community.

Because the Escambia site is located between an industrial area and a residential neighborhood, the EPA has established an extensive air-monitoring program. This is one of our air-monitoring stations. We have four of these stations located around the perimeter of the site: on the north, south, east, and west. This particular air-monitoring station is located immediately behind a local day care center. At each of these stations, we're measuring the total amount of particulates suspended in the air. We also are measuring the amount of contaminants that are on the particulates in the air. Particulates in the air could mean dust, pollen, moisture, even things like insects.

Next, I'm going to take you to an air-monitoring station that gives us real-time information on the amount of particulates in the air. This is our automated air-monitoring system. The way this works is, air is drawn through this tube into this device, where the amount of particulates are measured on a real-time basis. This information is then transmitted by radio to the site office, where it is logged into a computer. Let's go take a look at that next.

(man) we need to do something about it.

(Spalvins) and this is the concentration in those--

(man) in real-time, right.

(Spalvins) in real-time.

So we're around 25, 20 micrograms per cubic meter...

(man) right, 0.025.

(Spalvins) of particulates in the air.

(man) right.

This is the contaminated soil stockpile. It's a temporary storage for the contaminated soil that we excavate. All the water that lands on this soil, we want to control what happens to that water, so this is placed in a lined unit. All the rainwater and dust control water that's on here drains down here into these two pipes, and from here, it goes into this storage pond. As this fills up, we pump this water into the water treatment plant so that we can recycle the water. The water is pumped from the storage pond into this treatment pool, where the suspended solids are allowed to settle out before the water moves on to the next stage of treatment. The water is then pumped into a sock filter, which is one of these. The water is pumped into here. This sock filter removes most of the remaining suspended solids. This unit contains six of these sock filters. After this step, goes to the final treatment step, which is these large carbon filters. After this, the clean water is ready for reuse. After the water leaves the carbon filters, it's pumped into this pond, and from here, it's pumped into storage tanks, then used to fill the water trucks and used for dust suppression. This helps us use less city water for the dust control operations out here.

Every morning of work here starts with a health and safety meeting. In addition, every employee, whether government or contractor, has received a 40-hour HAZWOPER training, which includes health and safety training. In addition, we provide 24-hour security at the site and also security in the Herman and Pearl street neighborhood and the Clarinda Triangle neighborhood.

We've taken you inside the Escambia Treating Company site. We have shown you the dust suppression, we've shown you the water treatment system, and we've shown you our air-monitoring system. If you need further information, please look on our website at:


and also, you can reach Erik Spalvins or myself at:


Thank you for joining us.


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