Stubblefield Salvage

Walla Walla, WA - Region X

Site Contact:

Jeffrey Fowlow
On-Scene Coordinator

980 NE Myra Road
Walla Walla, WA 99362

Latitude: 46.0646500
Longitude: -118.3689200

Stubblefield Salvage and Recycling is an former metals salvage operation that operated at the Site from the 1960s until it ceased oerations in 2010. The main salvaging operation consisted of a large hydraulic shear used to cut up scrap metal and a large press that compressed it into blocks. An abandoned three-story wooden building, which had been used as a rendering plant, is adjacent to the shear and press.

Washington Department of Ecology referred the Site to EPA Region 10 on April 14, 2009, after determining that likely contamination at the Site was beyond what could be appropriately addressed through their programs. Earlier inspections by Ecology had determined releases to the environment of used oil and other heavy oils, hydraulic fluids, lead and acid contamination from damaged batteries lying uncovered on the ground, and likely polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) releases from spills of used oil and burning of various automobile components on the ground. No sampling was conducted.

The EPA performed a Removal Site Evaluation at the Site from May 2009 through April 2012. Seven field events were performed during this period to characterize the nature and extent of soil and groundwater contamination at the Site. The first three field events (May, September, and October 2009) focused on general site characterization and identifying potential source areas. The following two field events (March and October 2010) focused on delineating the major source area (i.e., the process area) and included the installation of monitoring wells to evaluate potential impacts to shallow groundwater. The final two field events (June 2011 and April 2012) focused on characterization of the horizontal extent of subsurface soil contamination and additional groundwater monitoring.

The EPA conducted a two-phase time-critical removal action to address threats to human health and the environment present on the surface of the Site including hazardous substance containers, leaking and abandoned drums, friable asbestos material, and contaminated surface soils.

The first phase of the Time-Critical Removal Action was performed in October 2009. The purpose of this action was to to mitigate the threat to human health and the environment posed by numerous containers of hazardous substances, including leaking drums of waste, piles of asbestos containing material and stained surface soil with elevated concentrations of metals, PCBs, SVOCs, PAHs, and other contaminants. Approximately 75 cubic yards (yd3) of non-Resource Conservation and Recovery Act lead-contaminated surface soils, 150 yd3 asbestos waste and asbestos-contaminated soil, seven 55-gallon drums of PCB oil and sludge, eleven 55-gallon drums of PCB oils and water, 40 yd3 of non-Toxic Substances Control PCB debris, and three 55-gallon drums of paint-related waste were removed from the Site during this response. Additionally, approximately 650 gallons of non-PCB oil was also shipped off-Site for recycling. At the conclusion of the 2009 removal action, SS&R was still operating at the Site and continuing to use leaking equipment including the hydraulic shear and baler, which likely resulted in continuing releases of oil and other hazardous substances.

In April 2012, the EPA returned to the Site to remove and dispose of abandoned drums of waste material that had been generated when salvage yard operations were shut down in mid-2010. The EPA characterized and disposed of sixty-one 55-gallon drums of waste, which included some drums containing wastes that had been abandoned at the Site by other unknown persons. Stained soil near the shop building was also excavated for off-Site disposal. Approximately 20 yd3 of non-RCRA solid waste, six 55-gallon drums of malathion (a pesticide), six 55-gallon drums of liquid flammable waste, eighteen 55-gallon drums of waste oil with lead, thirteen 55-gallon drums of waste oil, ten 55-gallon drums of liquid hazardous waste (not otherwise specified), and eight 55-gallon drums of solid hazardous waste (not otherwise specified) were transported off-Site for disposal.

On May 13, 2013, EPA returned to the Site to conduct a non-time critical removal action to excavate contaminated soil from the Process Area and dispose of the soil in an approved landfill. Over 13,000 tons of conaminated soil were removed from the Site between May 13 and June 28. Additional information regarding this project is available in the POLREPs/SITREPs section of this website. Reports and other information is available in the Documents section of this website.

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