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NPL Site Narrative for Himco Dump

Elkhart, Indiana

Federal Register Notice:  February 21, 1990

Conditions at proposal (June 24, 1988): The Himco Dump covers approximately 40 acres at County Road 10 and the Napanee Extension, located partially in the corporate limits of the city of Elkhart and partially in the unincorporated part of Elkhart County, Indiana. The privately owned site operated between 1960 and September 1976. Parts of a nonmarshy area were excavated to a depth of 10 to 20 feet, and, together with a marshy area, were filled with general refuse and medical and pharmaceutical wastes. Other industrial wastes may also have been landfilled, according to the company and a report prepared by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources and the Elkhart Water Works. The City of Elkhart issued an operating permit for that portion of the landfill inside the city limits.

During an inspection in July 1984, EPA observed several streams of leachate. The landfill was about 15 feet above the original ground level at the center, sloping to 5 feet at the edges. Much of the landfill was covered with sand. Isolated spots of stressed vegetation were visible. Sulfur odors were strong.

EPA detected selenium, arsenic, copper, lead, mercury, zinc, manganese, and other metals in monitoring wells downgradient of the site. The results corroborated analyses of residential wells conducted in 1974 by the State, which showed high manganese levels.

In 1974, the State Health Commissioner advised the site owner to drill deep wells to replace six contaminated shallow residential wells. In 1975, the owner signed a Consent Agreement (adopted by the Stream Pollution Control Board) that resulted in the closing of the dump in September 1976.

The dump is located above a continuous portion of the shallow aquifer system that is the sole source of drinking water for the community. A conservative estimate is that wells within 3 miles of the site serving 20,000 people may be affected.

Status (February 21, 1990): In early 1989, EPA discussed the possibility of having Himco Waste Away, Inc. (a transporter and former operator of the site) and Miles Laboratories (a generator and one of the current owners of the site) conduct a remedial investigation/feasibility study (RI/FS). New information received during these discussions identified an additional 37 generators representing a broad range of manufacturing firms that had sent wastes to the site.

In September 1989, EPA began the RI/FS, which will determine the type and extent of contamination at the site and identify alternatives for remedial action.

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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