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Wedron Groundwater Contamination Site

Site Information
Contact Information

Community Involvement Coordinator
Heriberto León (leon.heriberto@epa.gov)
312-886-6163 or 800-621-8431, ext. 66163

On-Scene Coordinator
Steven Faryan (faryan.steven@epa.gov)
312-353-9351 or 800-621-8431, ext. 39351

Community Relations Coordinator Illinois EPA
Michelle Tebrugge
(Michelle.Tebrugge@Illinois.gov)
Office of Community Relations MC 5
1021 N. Grand Ave. East
P.O Box 19276
Springfield, IL
217-524-4825

Remedial Project Manager
Illinois EPA

John Richardson
(John.Richardson@Illinois.gov)
1021 N. Grand Ave. East
P.O Box 19276
Springfield, IL
217-782-0243

Photo Gallery
Click to see photos of the site
Public Meeting and Open House

EPA will hold a public meeting and open house Wednesday, April 23, 2014 to provide updated information on the investigation of the Wedron groundwater site and on the status of an alternate water supply for affected residents.

Public Meeting 5 - 6 p.m.
Open House 6 - 7 p.m.
Serena High School Cafeteria
2283 N. 3812th Road
Serena

On this page:

Background

EPA and Illinois EPA have been working in Wedron, Ill., to determine which private drinking water wells have been affected by pollution. The agencies are also investigating potential sources of the groundwater contamination. “Groundwater” is an environmental term for underground supplies of fresh water.

In 2011, residents of Wedron reported gasoline odors from their water. As a result, the Illinois Department of Public Health collected groundwater samples in October 2011 and found two homes with benzene levels above the health standard. In November 2011, the LaSalle County Health Department told these residents to no longer drink or use their well water. Illinois EPA then contacted EPA, which began the current investigation.

Beginning in December 2011, EPA collected groundwater samples from 22 residential wells and one commercial well in the town. These samples were tested for the presence of a family of chemicals called volatile organic compounds (VOCs), semi-volatile organic compounds and metals.

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Site Update

April 2014

EPA collected additional water samples from the recently installed eight residential replacement wells in early April 2014. Previous sampling showed that the water is good quality. EPA expects to have the results from this second round of sampling in May 2014.

EPA continues to oversee groundwater and soil investigations by BP, Illinois Railway, Lockheed Martin, Technisand, and Wedron Silica Company as agreed through Administrative Orders on Consent (AOCs) with the companies.

The AOCs are available on this webpage under Technical Documents.

Harsh winter weather caused some delays with the investigations. Most of the soil investigation work is complete, and results from the soil investigations and the Hoxsey property investigation show there are multiple potential sources of the benzene contamination in Wedron.

EPA is overseeing remaining investigation work that will confirm the locations of the sources of contamination. Final reports for the investigations are expected in summer 2014.

Wedron Silica Company and Technisand are planning to perform air monitoring in Wedron for one year starting summer 2014. The air monitors will collect information on blowing sand in Wedron, and EPA will oversee the work.

Past Site Updates

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Site History

In April 1982, Illinois EPA began a groundwater investigation in Wedron after the Illinois Department of Public Health received complaints from several residents of gasoline-type odors in their private well water. Illinois EPA collected groundwater samples from several private wells in April 1982, June 1983 and August 1983 and confirmed the presence of chemicals found in gasoline. At that time, a new deeper well was drilled to provide clean drinking water to the affected homes. In addition, an investigation of several potential sources of contamination was completed, but no source was found.

Site Description

The site is the unincorporated community of Wedron located in LaSalle County, Ill.  The site is located in a mixed rural, residential, and industrial area. North of the site are residential homes, agriculture, and undeveloped land.  To the east are the Fox River, agriculture, and undeveloped land.  To the south are the Wedron Silica sand-mining facility and mining pits; and to the west are two Wedron Silica quarries, agriculture, and undeveloped land.  Current and former commercial and industrial properties known at the site include the Fairmount Minerals Ltd., Wedron Silica Mining Co., Illinois Railway railroad company, the former Hoxsey gas station, and the former W.D. Grain Co.

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Documents

Fact Sheets

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Technical Documents

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Public Meetings

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