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NPL Site Narrative for Aladdin Plating

Scott Township, Pennsylvania

Federal Register Notice:  July 22, 1987

Conditions at proposal (January 22, 1987): The Aladdin Plating Site covers 2 acres in Scott Township, Lackawanna County, Pennsylvania. The company ran a small electroplating operation from 1947 to 1982, when it closed following a fire. The electroplating of nickel, copper, and chromium was the primary process during the company's operations. This process used sulfuric acid, chromic acid, cyanide, and water (which was used mainly for rinsing purposes). During the electroplating process, the rinse water became contaminated with electroplating materials. The contaminated rinse water was deposited in two unlined lagoons on the site. Over the years of operation, electroplating sludge was deposited into the lagoons, which had no diking or diversion ditches, permitting them to overflow. About 10 years ago, the owner removed the sludge from the lagoons and filled them with dirt.

Several vats and containers thought to contain cyanide solution, chromic acid, and sulfuric acid remain as they were at the time of the fire. Some are leaking, according to an inspection conducted by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Resources (PA DER).

Analyses conducted by PA DER in 1983 detected chromium in soil at several locations near the building and lagoon. EPA tests in 1984 also identified lead and cyanide in on-site soils. Presence of these contaminants on-site potentially threatens local water supplies. An estimated 11,000 people draw drinking water from public and private wells within 3 miles of the site, the nearest within 1,500 feet.

The Pennsylvania Gas & Water Co. has two surface water intakes along Leggetts Creek -- the Griffin Creek intake and Providence Reservoir intake -- which are approximately 0.5 mile and 2.1 miles, respectively, downstream of the site. Water from the Griffin Creek intake is pumped to the Providence Reservoir/Treatment Plant, where it is treated and mixed into the distribution system. This water is used to supplement the water supply for Scranton (population 88,000). Water from the Griffin Creek intake is also sold to Keystone Water Co. and National Utilities Co. as a supplemental supply. The two companies serve approximately 13,000 people.

PA DER cited the company for violating the Clean Streams Law in 1974 and for operating without a permit to treat industrial waste.

Status (July 22, 1987): Using CERCLA emergency removal funds, EPA has stabilized the site by overpacking drums, fencing the site, and emptying the vats. An on-site building has been demolished and decontaminated. All decontaminated debris and vats are being sent to a scrap yard. Contaminated material will be removed once an approved disposal facility is identified. Soil and ground water are being monitored in coordination with EPA's Remedial Response Program.

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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