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State of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
State of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 8, 2006

Contact: Elaine Makatura
(609) 292-2994

DEP ORDERS IMMEDIATE REMOVAL OF PCB-CONTAMINATED CONCRETE
FROM REDEVELOPMENT SITES

(06/13) TRENTON - Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Lisa P. Jackson today ordered Ford Motor Company and its contractors to immediately remove concrete tainted with traces of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) from seven New Jersey redevelopment sites.

"In no uncertain terms, we are holding Ford Motor Co. and its contractors fully accountable for illegally distributing and using PCB-contaminated concrete at these sites. Not only will all potentially hazardous material be removed, we intend to make sure they follow the strictest environmental controls during those cleanups," Commissioner Jackson said.

Though the DEP determined the concrete contains very low levels of PCB contamination, use of the material at redevelopment sites in Mercer, Middlesex and Ocean counties has generated considerable concern among residents.

"I think it's imperative we do our utmost to restore the public's trust in our commitment to safeguarding their health and protecting the environment. To that end, I have put all DEP inspectors on notice we are escalating surveillance at all New Jersey disposal and recycling operations -- including unannounced inspections. If any violations are found, fines and penalties will be issued without hesitation," Commissioner Jackson said.

The commissioner's call to action comes less than a week after municipal officials and community representatives raised questions about the concrete trucked to seven redevelopment sites from Ford's now-defunct plant in Edison. Following the shutdown and sale of the facility, Ford hired contractors to remediate the property and prepare it for redevelopment by demolishing and removing buildings on the site, including concrete floor slabs.

In February 2004, Ford contracted with MIG Alberici Inc. of Detroit to perform the demolition. Alberici planned to reuse the concrete from the site for roads and other fill projects on the Ford property. In November 2004, Alberici obtained the DEP's approval to use the concrete after testing it for contamination, specifically PCBs, and determining the material did not have detectable levels. According to the DEP's cleanup criteria, concentrations of PCBs less than 0.49 parts per million allowed for unrestricted use at the Ford plant site.

However, subsequent material sampling revealed PCB contamination ranging from undetectable to 2 ppm.

Under the DEP's administrative order issued today, Ford must submit a plan within seven days for complete removal and proper disposal of all contaminated concrete material transported to development sites across the state. These sites include: American Standard site in Hamilton Township and a West Windsor Township site, Mercer County; Fulton Square site in New Brunswick; the former Tingley Rubber Co. in South Plainfield; the Applegarth site in Monroe Township, all Middlesex County; and Laurelton Mobile Home Park and the Brick 70 Plaza site, both in Brick Township, Ocean County.

Ford must remove all concrete material from each site within 30 days after the DEP approves each cleanup plan.

The DEP's order also requires Ford's removal plan to include the following:

  • A dust-control management plan for any dust emissions generated during removal and disposal;
  • A real-time air sampling plan that will monitor air emissions at the specific locations at the perimeter of each site;
  • A truck-washing system to prevent any material from leaving each site;
  • A mechanism to shut down all activity related to the concrete removal if the DEP verifies any problems with the dust management system or if an air monitoring system detects specific standard violations.

After all the concrete is removed, Ford must conduct post-excavation sampling at each site and prepare a final report on all measures taken to eliminate possible exposure from the concrete removal. Specifically, the report must provide information on the effectiveness of the dust management plan and sampling results from perimeter monitoring. Further, the report, which will be provided to local officials in each of the affected municipalities, will identify the quantity and locations of the material used at each site.

 

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Last Updated: March 8, 2006