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Congressional District # 5


EPA ID# IND980684583
Last Updated: March, 2012

Site Description

The 5-acre Poer Farm site is located on a small hill between two streams and along East County Road about three miles north of Wilkinson, Indiana. The site is an abandoned tract of land with a house and barn that collapsed and were vandalized. The surrounding area is open farmland that supports crops of soybeans and corn.

The site consists of three separate areas where Norman Poer and Michael Coleman received and stored about 275 drums of solvents and paint resins from 1973 until 1983. The owners planned to blend these materials into low-quality paint for bridges and barns. They abandoned the project and left the 55 gallon drums on the site.

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) inspected the site and found that the drums were leaking and that vegetation surrounding the area was damaged.  EPA analyzed the drums and surrounding soils and found the soil to be contaminated with volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and heavy metals.

Agricultural lands completely surround the Poer Farm site, and the nearest residence is approximately 650 feet to the north. Approximately 500 people live three miles north of the site in Wilkinson, and approximately 2,300 people live five miles away in Knightstown, Indiana.

Site Responsibility

This site was addressed through federal and state actions.  The potentially responsible party later reimbursed the agencies for past costs spent on the cleanup actions under a three party (federal, state, PRP) enforcement agreement.

Threats and Contaminants

Soil at the Poer Farm site contained VOCs, including toluene, xylene, and ethyl benzene, and heavy metals such as cadmium, arsenic, and lead.  EPA sampled the entire site following the emergency cleanup actions (see Cleanup Progress) and found no significant levels of contamination that could pose a threat to the environment.  Therefore, people living near the site are no longer at risk from exposure to hazardous chemicals.

Cleanup Progress

The Poer Farm site was proposed to the National Priorities List (NPL) in 1983.  Before final NPL listing, EPA conducted an emergency removal action and removed all drummed wastes as well as six to eight inches of soils from the drum storage areas.  EPA disposed of all solid and liquid wastes in offsite waste facilities.

In 1985, the site potentially responsible party (PRP) signed a consent order with EPA and the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) agreeing to reimburse EPA for the emergency response action costs that had been taken at the site and for costs to evaluate whether additional site contamination remained.  Based on the results of a 1985 EPA study and a 1988 study conducted by the site PRP, EPA determined that the removal and disposal of wastes in 1983 had eliminated the threat posed by the site and no further cleanup actions were necessary.

EPA issed a Record of Decision in September 1988 that called for "No Further Action" to be taken at the Poer Farm site.  EPA issued a site close-out report on August 30, 1990, and then deleted the Poer Farm site from the NPL on February 11, 1991.


Remedial Project Manager, U.S. EPA
howard caine (caine.howard@epa.gov)
(312) 353-9685

Community Involvement Coordinator, U.S. EPA
mike joyce
(312) 353-5546




Site Profile Information

This profile provides you with information on EPA's cleanup progress at this Superfund site.


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