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NPL Site Narrative for Harris (Farley Street)

Houston, Texas

Federal Register Notice:  September 08, 1983

Conditions at proposal (July 23, 1982): The Harris (Farley Street) Site, a 2-acre abandoned landfill containing tars and sludges, is in southeast Houston, Harris County, Texas. Records indicate that a transporter leased the site in 1958 and disposed of over 550 tons of liquids and sludges from local chemical industries in two trenches, each 120 by 40 feet. Following complaints, a thin layer of soil was placed over the disposal area in 1959. Subsequent owners discovered the wastes in 1961 during construction of a swimming pool. Wastes also appeared during other construction activity. Air, soil, ground water, and surface water are contaminated with organic chemicals. All residents in the immediate area use wells for drinking water.

Status (September 8, 1983): In November 1982, EPA awarded CERCLA funds to Texas for a remedial investigation/feasibility study (RI/FS) to determine the type and extent of contamination at the site and identify alternatives for remedial action. In June 1983, EPA and Dow Chemical, U.S.A., signed an Administrative Order on Consent under which Dow agreed to conduct the RI/FS.

Status (April 18, 1988): Dow submitted the RI report in November 1983 and the FS report in May 1984. The RI indicated that wastes on the site were styrene tars and their degradation products, including substituted benzenes, substituted biphenyls, polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons, and nonaromatic cyclics. Monitoring wells next to the trenches and downgradient of the site detected no contamination. As a result of these findings, EPA and Dow agreed on soil removal as the cleanup alternative. In September 1985, a second Administrative Order on Consent was signed covering design and implementation of the cleanup.

During 1986, Dow excavated contaminated soils and transported them to a hazardous waste landfill regulated under Subtitle C of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. Measurements of total extractable organics (TEO) were used to determine levels of soil contamination. Background level was defined as from 0 to 10 parts per million (ppm), with a detection limit of less than 2 ppm. Background levels of TEO were present in 54 of 57 soil samples collected after the removal; levels were slightly above background in 3 samples.

Because the action completely removed the contamination source, ground water was not monitored after the removal, and no operational or institutional controls were considered necessary to ensure future integrity of the cleanup.

The property is scheduled to be turned over to a disposal company and will become part of a nonhazardous materials landfill that now bounds the site on two sides. A sandpit to the south of the site is also scheduled to become a landfill once the usable sand has been removed.

This site is being deleted from the NPL because EPA, in consultation with the State of Texas, has determined that responsible parties have implemented all appropriate response action required.

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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