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Hazardous Waste Cleanup: Virginia Department of Transportation - Elko Materials Laboratory in Sandston, Virginia

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Between July 2009 and May 2010, Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) conducted initial investigation and site characterization activities. In June 2010, VDOT met with EPA and presented the assessment findings and proposed Interim Measures Plan. The formal Interim Measures Plan using in-situ and ex-situ chemical oxidization was submitted in September 2010 and EPA conditionally approved the plan in November 2010.

Cleanup Status

VDOT implemented a public notice period from November 4 to December 4, 2010 for the proposed Interim Measures.  VDOT began Interim Measures implementation in February 2011.

During the June to December 2011 time period, additional assessment activities were conducted to evaluate the presence of free product immediately beneath the former unit.  Additional monitoring and extraction wells were installed to facilitate the recovery. IM remediation efforts were subsequently focused on free product recovery followed by extraction of impacted ground water and vapors using dual phase.    Subsequently, both in-situ and ex-situ chemical oxidation technologies were implemented per the approved IM Plan.  Further aquifer testing was also conducted on the deeper horizon. 

During the May 2012 to December 2012 time period, IM remediation efforts continued to principally focus on mass removal within the sub-liner area using dual phase extraction.  Both in-situ and ex-situ chemical oxidation technologies were implemented within the sub-horizon per the approved IM Plan.  Additional enhancement efforts using surfactants were proposed, approved, and implement during this time period.

VDOT also evaluated two adjoining utility vaults located downgradient from SWMU#1 and determined that site-specific risk calculations indicate the concentrations are within acceptable limits.

EPA completed the Environmental Indicator Documents Current Human Exposures and Migration of Contaminated Groundwater on October 23, 2013. The EI documents listed the human exposure risk and contaminant migration as “Under Control”. There are no known human or environmental down-gradient receptors.

On March 24, 2014, VDOT submitted an IM Amendment that proposed removing and disposing 352 tons of solvent impacted soil from the central portion of SWMU #1. DEQ commented on the proposed Amendment on April 5, 2014 and issued approval of the revised IM Amendment on April 28, 2014. The Facility proceeded with the characterization and removal activities beginning in May 2014.

VDOT submitted an Interim Measures Progress Report on March 19, 2015.  The report summarized the remedial actions undertaken in 2014 which included excavation of 352 tons of solvent impacted soil from a hot spot within the SWMU, removal of additional contaminant mass (vapor phase) through dual phase extraction, and pumped an additional 120,000 gallons of impacted groundwater.   The facility also reported the results of multiple post removal groundwater sampling events.

The results of the IM suggest that VOCs in groundwater were overall reduced but remain above risk-based levels and MCLs on and offsite.  Therefore in August 2019, VDOT prepared an IM/Corrective Measures Study that evaluated additional remedial alternatives, which recommended additional corrective measures and continued groundwater monitoring.

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    Site Description

    Interactive Map of Virginia Department of Transportation - Elko Materials Laboratory, Sandston, VA

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    The VDOT Elko Materials Lab is situated on +/-16 acre tract near Sandston, Henrico County, Virginia. The Elko Lab has been operating since 1980 and conducts tests on materials used in the construction and maintenance of the Commonwealth's roads. There is one solid waste management unit (SWMU) of concern which is a surface impoundment that received waste water from the facility's laboratories. The SWMU contained both listed and characteristic hazardous waste. The waste was previously removed from the unit and it is no longer an operating unit. The releases of volatile organic compounds from this unit to soil and groundwater are being investigated under RCRA corrective action.

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    Contaminants at this Facility

    The primary contaminants in the groundwater and soils at the facility are 1,1,1-trichloroethane (1,1,1-TCA) and its daughter products 1,1-dichloroethane (1,1-DCA) and 1,1-dichloroethene (1,1-DCE) along with 1,4-Dioxane and trichloroethene (TCE)

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    Institutional and Engineering Controls at this Facility

    Site Specific Institutional Controls are being developed.

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    Land Reuse Information at this Facility

    The facility is in continued use.

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    Site Responsibility at this Facility

    RCRA Corrective Action activities at this facility are being conducted under the direction of VA DEQ with assistance from the EPA Region 3.

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