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Hazardous Waste Cleanup: Clarios - Middletown Battery Assembly Plant (Formerly: Johnson Controls Battery Group) in Middletown, Delaware

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Johnson Controls Battery Group Inc (JCBGI) owns and operates the facility located at 700 North Broad Street, Middletown, Delaware. The 16 acre substantially paved facility consists of the manufacturing building and parking lots. It has been engaged in the manufacture of various size industrial and  commercial lead-acid batteries since 1961. On August 15, 1980, EPA received the facility’s notification of hazardous waste activity in which JCBGI identified itself as a generator of lead and barium, EPA hazardous waste codes: D005 and D008, respectively. On September 29, 1984, the facility received its hazardous waste storage permit from Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC). On April 28, 1993, DNREC approved the facility’s closure plan for its permitted hazardous waste storage pad in the southwest portion of the Facility.

Cleanup Status

On March 8 and 9, 1983, a rupture in the Facility’s air pollution control baghouse collection system caused a release of approximately 75 pounds of lead from the Facility stack No. 44. The release occurred over a ten-hour period. On March 31, 1983, EPA and DNREC conducted sampling of soil, sediments, surface water of Dove Neck Branch Creek and an adjacent domestic well. The March 31, 1983 inspection revealed that lead was present in soil above EPA standards at the Facility at concentrations up to 2,750 mg/kg.

EPA and DNREC issued a Final Decision of no further action with institutional controls on December 23, 2005. The final remedy included excavation of nearby and onsite contaminated soils, and cleaning of rooftops, down spouts and gutters under an EPA and Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) approved workplan. The institutional controls are being enforced under a United Environmental Covenants Act (UECA) agreement. All remedial actions were advertised to provide public notice. No community responses were received.

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Site Description

Interactive Map of Clarios - Middletown Battery Assembly Plant

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Located in Middletown, Delaware, since 1961, the facility manufactures commercial and industrial lead/acid batteries. Urban sprawl has changed its industrial rural location to include residential development at its borders.

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Contaminants at this Facility

The primary contaminant of concern at the facility was lead in soil.

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Institutional and Engineering Controls at this Facility

    Institutional /Engineering Control Summary
    Restrictions or Controls that Address: Yes No
    Groundwater Use
    Residential Use
    Vapor Intrusion
    Capped Area(s)
    Other Engineering Controls
    Other Restrictions

    Institutional controls for the site , enforced under an Environmental Covenant (UECA) agreement are:

    • No groundwater wells shall be installed or groundwater withdrawn from any well on property without DNREC approval.
    • Use of property restricted to non-residential use.
    • There shall be no drilling, digging, excavation without prior approval of DNREC.
    • The facility will comply with the site soil management plan.

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    Land Reuse Information at this Facility

    The facility is under continued use.

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    Site Responsibility at this Facility

    Resource Conservation and Recovery Act Corrective Action activities at this facility are being conducted under the direction of the EPA Region 3 with assistance from Delaware DNREC.

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