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NPL Site Narrative for New London Submarine Base

New London, Connecticut

Federal Register Notice:  August 30, 1990

Conditions at proposal (October 26, 1989): The New London Submarine Base covers 1,412 acres on the east bank of the Thames River, New London, New London County, Connecticut. The area around the base is mixed industrial, commercial, and residential property. Established in 1916, the base serves primarily as an operation and support base for submarine activities in the Atlantic Ocean.

The base is participating in the Installation Restoration Program (IRP), established in 1978. Under this program, the Department of Defense seeks to identify, investigate, and clean up contamination from hazardous materials. Under IRP, the Navy has identified 16 potential hazardous waste disposal areas and has extensively studied three areas.

From 1957 to 1973, volatile organic compounds, pesticides, PCBs, spent battery acids, and other waste were buried below the water table in the 25-acre Area A Landfill, located on base wetlands. The second area currently being investigated is the Defense Property Disposal Operations area, which was used as a burning ground and landfill from 1950 to 1969. The third area is the Over Bank Disposal Area, which operated from 1957 to the 1970s.

According to Navy tests conducted in 1984, sediment and surface water in and around Area A are contaminated with lead, cadmium, 4,4-DDD, and 4,4-DDT. Ground water in some areas is as shallow as 10 feet below the surface, and soils are permeable. These conditions potentially threaten ground water, which provides drinking water to 3,500 to 5,000 people within 3 miles of the base.

Status (August 30, 1990): EPA plans to negotiate an Interagency Agreement with the Navy under CERCLA Section 120 to cover the remedial activities to be conducted.

For more information about the hazardous substances identified in this narrative summary, including general information regarding the effects of exposure to these substances on human health, please see the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) ToxFAQs. ATSDR ToxFAQs can be found on the Internet at ATSDR - ToxFAQs (http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/toxfaqs/index.asp) or by telephone at 1-888-42-ATSDR or 1-888-422-8737.

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