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NPL Site Narrative for Metropolitan Mirror and Glass Co., Inc.

Frackville, Pennsylvania

Federal Register Notice:  October 14, 1992

Conditions at Proposal (February 7, 1992): Metropolitan Mirror and Glass Co., Inc., manufactured mirrors in Frackville, Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania, from 1959 to 1982, when it went bankrupt. The 8-acre site is an industrial area at the intersection of Industrial Road and Altamount Boulevard.

In 1982, after the bankruptcy, National Patent Development Corp. acquired the site, then sold it in May 1987 to St. Jude Polymer Co. Since then, St. Jude has recycled plastic bottles on the site; currently, no wastes are disposed of on-site. In 1986, Keystone Water Co. found tetrachloroethene in its wells, which supplied drinking water to Frackville. A Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Resources (PA DER) investigation identified Metropolitan Mirror as a possible source of the contamination. In response to PA DER's investigation, EPA conducted a series of investigations that were unable to confirm that Metropolitan Mirror is a source of tetrachloroethene in the public wells.

Metropolitan Mirror used silver solutions, paint strippers, paint thinner, and solvents in its manufacturing operations and stored them on-site. At any one time, two waste water settling lagoons were in use; sludge dredged from the lagoons is believed to have been deposited nearby. One pair of lagoons was used before 1967, a second pair during 1967-82. EPA tests conducted in 1988 and 1989 found aluminum, heavy metals (including mercury and lead), ethylbenzene, and xylenes in sludge in the two lagoon areas and in soils in the drum storage area. Because all three areas are unlined, ground water is shallow (less than 10 feet in some places), and soils are permeable, contaminants could migrate into ground water. An estimated 1,000 people obtain drinking water from public and private wells within 4 miles of the site, the nearest a private well within 0.2 mile of the site.

The drum storage area is adjacent to the St. Jude Polymer manufacturing building, thus exposing the company's 25 workers to contaminated soil. An estimated 3,800 people live within 1 mile of the site.

Status (October 1992): In July 1992, EPA emergency staff assessed the site and determined that no removal action was warranted at that time.

EPA is conducting a search to identify parties potentially responsible for wastes associated with the site and will solicit the participation of those identified in cleaning up the site.

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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