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Congressional District # 02


EPA ID# MND006154017
Last Updated: November, 2011

Site Description

The Nutting Truck and Castor Site covers 8.6 acres located at 1221 Division Street in the city of Faribault, Rice County, Minnesota. The property is bounded by on the west by Prairie Avenue andon the southeast by railroad tracks.  Faribault has a population of aproximately 21,000.  The area surrounding the Site is residential, commercial, and light industrial.  All nearby properties are connected to the Faribault municipal drinking water supply.

Between 1891 and 1984, Nutting manufactured and distributed casters, wheels, hand trucks, and towline trucks at this Site.  In 1984, the manufacturing operation relocated to Watertown, South Dakota.  From 1959 to 1979, Nutting's Faribaut facility used a seepage pit in the west central area of the site to deposit waste and sludges including waste solvents.  In response to a 1979 Notice of Noncompliance by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA), Nutting excavated the seepage pit to meet residential soil levels, backfilled it with clean fill, and capped the area with concrete.  Groundwater contamination was also found to be associated with the property.  The property is currently owned by Praire Avenue Leasing Ltd. and is leased for commercial and light industrial purposes. Groundwater beneath the site flows to the northeast.  The City of Faribault operated a municipal water supply well located approximately one half mile north of the Site in which trace levels of contaminants were found.  However, more detailed investigations determined that it was not related to the Nutting Site.

Site Responsibility

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) is the lead Agency for this Site.  The Site is part of an agreement with EPA in which the State handles management and enforcement at the Site.

Threats and Contaminants

Trichloroethylene (TCE) was the main contaminant of concern at the Site and is currently the only contaminant of concern.  During the early and mid-1980's, investigations detected TCE and other contaminants in shallow groundwater aquifer (glacial outwash and St. Peter Sandstone) downgradient of the former seepage pit at concentrations up to 570 parts-per-billion (ppb) and in the underlying deeper groundwater aquifer (Prairie du Chien Group) at concentrations up to 35 ppb.  TCE was not detected in downgradient Prairie du Chien wells located offsite.  

In the late 1970's, soil sampling was also performed under State direction to determine whether non-foundry wastes were disposed of in the former surface depression on the site.  The samples showed that the contamination was limited to surface soils and was likely the result of spillage during drum handling.  This threat was removed by cleanup prior to listing on the National Priorities List (NPL).


Cleanup Progress

In 1983, the State issued a request for response action (RFRA) to the Nutting Company, as a potentially responsible party (PRP). On April 26, 1984, the MPCA and Nutting signed a consent order to conduct a remedial investigation (RI) at the site.  An RI is a study into the nature and extent of contamination at the site.  Due to the groundwater contamination, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) placed the site on the NPL in September 8, 1983, making it eligible for investigation and cleanup under the Superfund program.

Following a second RFRA, a Consent Order was signed by Nutting and the MPCA on September 22, 1987.  In the Consent Order, Nutting was required to perform the remedial action (RA) at the site according to the specifications described in the State's Remedial Action Plan (RAP).  The Consent Order and associated RAP required Nutting to extract groundwater until a concentration of 50 ppb of TCE was consistently achieved in the shallow aquifer at the Nutting property boundary, as measured in Monitoring Wells B-15 and B-16, the downgradient monitoring wells closest to the property boundary.  The groundwater extraction requirements in the RAP were designed to protect both the shallow aquifer and the more lightly contaminated Prairie du Chien aquifer underlying the shallow aquifer.

Nutting constructed a groundwater extraction system which began operating in 1987.  Two extraction wells were installed in the shallow aquifer: one in the glacial outwash and  one in the St. Peter Sandstone.  The wells operated at a combined extraction rate of up to 50 gallons per minute.  The extracted groundwater was treated on-site using a gravity cascade to remove TCE and other volatile organic compounds and was discharged to the municipal stormwater sewer and regulated by discharge permits. 

Five-year reviews of the Nutting cleanup were conducted in 1994, 1998, 2003, and 2008. The reviews indicated that the soil cleanup was protective of human health and the environment, the groundwater extraction system effectively contained the plume, and contaminant levels in groundwater were gradually decreasing.  In 2003, the Remedial Action Plan was amended to lower the cleanup level for TCE to five ppb.  This is the current MDH Health Risk Limit (HRL) and is  considered the concentration in groundwater that can safely be consumed on a daily basis over a lifetime. The federal Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL) for TCE, used in the regulation of public water supplies, is also five ppb. 

In 2004, the extraction wells were shut down with the approval of the State.  Groundwater monitoring continued through May of 2007 and showed that the plume boundaries were stable and contaminant concentrations were continuing to decrease.  At that time, TCE contamination in groundwater remained at 16 ppb in the location of former disposal pit.   Statistical analysis indicates that contaminant levels in groundwater will continue to decrease through natural attenuation.  

In 2008, an Environmental Covenant and Easement was signed to limit use of groundwater at the site which exceeded MCLs.  The State has deleted the Site from its Permanent List of Priorities (PLP).   EPA will propose the site for deletion from the National Priority List (NPL) once groundwater meets the MCL. 

Congressional Interest

In 2011, Senator Amy Klobuchar inquired on behalf of a constituent regarding EPA's plans for deleting the Site from the NPL.  EPA responded and will work with the Site owner to find a cost-effective method to continue to monitor groundwater so that the site can be deleted as soon as contaminant concentrations reach health based limits.  This is expected to occur through natural attenuation of the small plume that currently remains beneath the site.

Property Reuse

The Site property is currently operated by Prairie Avenue Leasing. The main tenant on the property is JBJ Manufacturing, a welding and machine shop. The former disposal area (now remediated) has been used as a loading dock, and the remainder of the former gravel pit area is largely paved and has been used for parking.


Remedial Project Manager, U.S. EPA
leah evison (evison.leah@epa.gov)
(312) 886-2064

Community Involvement Coordinator, U.S. EPA
dave novak
(312) 886-7478




Site Profile Information

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


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