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Hazardous Waste Cleanup: Conrail Meadville Car Repair Facility in Meadville, Pennsylvania

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Cleanup Status

Conrail has completed the environmental cleanup at this Facility in Meadville, Pennsylvania. In July, 1993, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP) determined the Facility to be clean-closed. The following paragraphs describe the releases that occurred at the Conrail Paint Shop as well as the corrective measures taken to remediate the releases.

During an inspection by PADEP on August 21, 1985, it was discovered that Conrail employees were disposing xylene thinner (used to clean paint spray guns) onto the soil surface outside the southern end of the Paint Shop building. It was estimated that approximately 364 gallons of xylene and an unknown amount of paint waste had been released to the environment in this area.

In response to potential xylene contamination in the soil and groundwater in the vicinity of the Paint Shop, Conrail retained OHM Remediation Services Corporation to perform closure activities at the site. A Phase I Investigation was performed in 1987, which included nine soil borings and the installation of four monitoring wells. Results of this investigation revealed only localized accumulations of solid waste paint in the soil, and no significantly elevated concentrations of inorganic or organic hazardous materials in either the soils or the underlying groundwater at the Facility.

A Phase II Investigation was done in 1990, which included further investigation of contamination in the shallow and deep soils, and the installation of eight additional monitoring wells. Results of this investigation found only two soil samples indicating the presence of total volatile organic compounds. All soil samples were found to be below acceptable levels for both lead and chromium. No site related compounds were detected in any of the groundwater samples.

Based on the results of these two investigations, approximately 170 cubic yards of soil was excavated from five different locations at the Facility. Confirmatory soil sampling was performed in these areas, and four monitoring wells installed and sampled to confirm the absence of contamination in the groundwater.

After reviewing the available data, PADEP declared the Conrail Paint Shop to be "clean-closed" in a letter to the Facility dated June 30, 1993. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) agrees with this determination, and believes that no further corrective action is necessary at the Conrail Paint Shop at this time.

EPA released a "Statement of Basis" for the Conrail Paint Shop on May 31, 2000. The public was invited to comment on the proposal that no further action be required at the Conrail Paint Shop during a public comment period which lasted forty-five calendar days from the date this matter was publicly noticed in the local newspaper ("Meadville Tribune" from May 31 to July 15, 2000). On July 15, 2000, EPA completed the public comment period, during which time EPA did not receive any comments on its proposal that no further corrective action is necessary at this time. Therefore EPA has adopted the proposed decision as the final decision.

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Site Description

Interactive map of Conrail Meadville Car Repair Facility, Meadville, PA

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The former Conrail Paint Shop building and surrounding property is located at 10677 McHenry Street in Meadville, Crawford County, Pennsylvania.

The former Conrail Car Repair facility was used for the reconditioning of railroad cars and was divided into several primary sections including the main repair and assembly shop, the sandblasting and undercoating shop, and the paint shop. The area addressed under this EPA identification number is for the third section, the Conrail Paint Shop area (Facility), which includes the former paint shop building and the surrounding property (approximately 2.466 acres total) and does not include the other areas of the former Conrail Car Repair Shop. Erie Railroad operated the entire rail car repair facility at this location from 1957 until 1977, when Conrail bought the property from Erie. Conrail then operated the facility until it's closure on December 31, 1989. Today, the former paint shop and surrounding property is owned and maintained solely as a warehouse by Corrugated Specialties Incorporated.

Former operations associated with the refinishing of reconditioned freight cars in the paint shop area produced hazardous wastes including mineral spirits, which were used as the primary cleaning and paint thinning solvents at the Facility and also:  xylene, waste paint, and paint sludges.

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Contaminants at this Facility

The  hazardous wastes at the facility  included mineral spirits, which were used as the primary cleaning, and paint thinning solvents including  xylene, waste paint, and paint sludge .

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Institutional and Engineering Controls at this Facility

    Institutional Controls were not required at the site.

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    Land Reuse Information at this Facility

    The facility is being reused.

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    Site Responsibility at this Facility

    Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) Corrective Action activities at this facility have been conducted under the direction of Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection with assistance from the EPA Region 3.

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