Blackburn and Union Provileges

Walpole, MA - Region I

Site Contact:

Athanasios Hatzopoulos

South Street
Walpole, MA

Latitude: 42.1390100
Longitude: -71.2514100

Due to the Site conditions and potential threat of release of the hazardous materials from the Site, on July 15, 2008, the EPA Remedial Program referred the Site to the Emergency Planning and Response Branch (EPRB) for further investigation.

The Site includes multiple parcels of land. For the purposes of this removal action, the response actions will be undertaken at parcels Lot # 33-130 and Lot # 33-174.

Lot # 33-130 is approximately ¼ of an acre used by an abutting residential property owner who has planted some trees on the property. During EPA’s investigation of the Site, automotive brake pads were visible on this parcel.

Lot 33-174 consists of a two story vacant building, with an approximately 32,000 square foot footprint. The building is constructed of wood/concrete and metal, with a partial basement. The greatest portions of the floors are constructed of wood, with the remaining flooring made of concrete. There are openings on the first and second floors where machinery of various former operations has been removed. Due to ongoing deterioration of the roof directly over these areas, inclement weather has caused these openings in the floors to become larger, rendering them structurally unsafe. There are large gaps where some windows are not covered or wood that was used to board them up has degraded, allowing for precipitation to enter, and provides a pathway for contaminants inside to escape from the building.

Although there are currently locks on many of the entrances to the building, the condition of the structures allows for refugee dust, debris, air borne contaminants present on Site to escape from the building structure.

On November 12 – 13, 2008, Region I Removal Program staff and contractors conducted a preliminary assessment/site investigation (PA/SI) at the Site. Within the former mill building, pipe insulation material and heating system related insulation were collected and sampled for asbestos content. In addition, liquid samples were collected from abandoned drums and other containers and were analyzed for volatile and semivolatile organic compounds (VOCs and SVOCs), metals, cyanide, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), flashpoint, and pH. The bulk asbestos analysis revealed that samples contain asbestos with the highest concentration up to 70% chrysotile. Several of the drum and container samples exhibited the characteristics of hazardous wastes (i.e.: pH greater than 12 and flash point < 60ºC). The liquid samples collected also revealed elevated levels, above the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection’s (MassDEP) Standards for the following hazardous materials:

a) Lead levels ranging to 6,870 milligrams per kilogram (mg/Kg);
b) SVOCs - Methylnaphthalene-2 up to 1,900mg/Kg, napthalene up to 6,500mg/Kg;
c) VOCs - M/P Xylene to 69,000 mg/Kg, toluene 390 mg/Kg.

On the vacant lot, surface soil and automotive brake pads that were formerly land filled, were collected and analyzed. The bulk asbestos analysis revealed that the brake pads contain chrysotile asbestos up to 25%, and the surface soils contain traces of chrysotile asbestos.

The Removal Program documented its findings that a time critical removal action is warranted at the Site in its closure memorandum dated February 26, 2009.

For additional information, visit the Pollution Report (POLREPS) , Pollution/Situation Report (Pol/Sitreps) section.