The Site includes an approximately 13.8-acre property in a mixed commercial, industrial, and residential area. The Site property includes a three-story factory building, which is constructed of brick, corrugated steel, and concrete block, and was built in or about 1950. The building is approximately 102,768 square feet and sits on a concrete foundation with a full basement. The building is in poor condition and of questionable structural integrity, with problems such as roof leaks and floor collapse in some areas. There are paved parking areas located south of the building.
Industrial activities were conducted at the Site between 1950 and 1987, beginning with Sig-Trans, Inc., which machined metal parts from the 1950s to about 1966. In May 1967, Microfab began manufacturing operations, including manufacturing printed circuit boards, electroplating activities, and other metal finishing operations, until October 1987. Manufacturing operations at the Site ceased in or about 1987, and the Site has been unoccupied since that time.
On August 16, 2018, EPA Region 1’s Remedial Program requested EPA Region 1’s Emergency Planning and Response Branch (EPRB)’s assistance to evaluate whether site conditions at the Microfab, Inc. (Former) Superfund Site warranted a time-critical removal action. On August 31, 2018, EPA and its Superfund Technical Assistance and Response Team (START) contractor mobilized to the Site to perform a removal preliminary assessment and site investigation (PA/SI). Representatives from the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) and the City of Amesbury were also present during the initial site walkthrough of the property and facility.
During the PA/SI, START collected four samples from various chemical storage tanks and one sample of floor sweepings underneath the electroplating lines for heavy metals, cyanide, and pH analyses. START also collected three surface soil samples for heavy metals analysis. The PA/SI confirmed the presence of CERCLA hazardous substances that poses a direct contact threat, as well as a potential for release or further release into the environment. Based upon the PA/SI sampling results and the findings from the MicroFab, Inc. Hazardous Material Survey Report, dated December 2016 and prepared for MassDEP, the PA/SI was concluded and a time-critical removal action was recommended in the Site Investigation Closure Memorandum dated October 16, 2018.