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NPL Site Narrative for Palmerton Zinc Pile

PALMERTON ZINC PILE
Palmerton, Pennsylvania

Federal Register Notice:  September 08, 1983

Conditions at listing (December 1982): The Palmerton Zinc Pile occupies about 200 acres in Palmerton, Pennsylvania, on the north slope of Blue Mountain along Aquashicola Creek. During the past 70 years, New Jersey Zinc Co.'s nearby zinc smelter deposited 33 million tons of residue, creating a cinder bank that extends for 2.5 miles and measures about 200 feet high and 500 to 1,000 feet wide. Zinc and cadmium were detected in Aquashicola Creek and nearby drinking wells. Air pollution from the smelter has also resulted in area-wide contamination, and very high concentrations of zinc and cadmium have been detected in soil and garden vegetables.

Status (July 1983): New Jersey Zinc Co. is controlling run-off from the cinder bank by placing material containing large amounts of lime at the base of the bank, which precipitates the heavy metals. The company has also graded and seeded the cinder bank to help reduce run-off.

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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