Site Investigation of a Closed Manufacturing Facility in France
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An appliance controls manufacturing facility in Thyez, France was active in industrial activities from the 1960s until 2007. Operations at the facility included metal working, painting, assembly, and the production of control devices for household appliances. The current facility owner retained Geosyntec shortly thereafter to complete site assessment activities to prepare the property for potential sale.

Geosyntec's Scope of Services

In early 2008, Geosyntec and a local contractor completed a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment. We identified no major environmental liabilities during this assessment, but we did identify several potential sources of contamination where solvents had historically been used, two former underground storage tanks (UST), oil-contaminated soils near the air pump and hazardous liquid storage area, and backfill material located between an electrical and electro-mechanical workshop.

In the summer of 2008, Geosyntec and our local contractor completed a Phase II Environmental Site Assessment, which included a subsurface investigation of the areas of potential contamination identified in the Phase I update, including those we identified. The objective of the Phase II investigation was to obtain a better understanding of potential subsurface contamination at the Site and to evaluate any associated risks to human health.

Based on the results of our Phase II ESA investigation, we determined that soils, groundwater, and/or soil gas at the site were impacted by several metals (cadmium and copper), petroleum hydrocarbons, halogenated volatile organic compounds, and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). Although impacts were generally minor, we completed a human health risk assessment to evaluate potential risks to on-or off-site receptors. We considered exposure pathways in the risk assessment that included inhalation of indoor and outdoor air both on and off the facility property and ingestion of soil. Our results indicated that the risk associated with both ingestion and inhalation pathways did not exceed acceptable risk limits for future site employees and for off-property receptors.

Notable Accomplishments

Geosyntec's use of the innovative and low-cost passive soil gas samplers provided important insight regarding the nature of VOC impacts in soil gas at the Site. Data from these samplers were used in the quantitative human health risk assessment and helped support the conclusion that potential exposures to indoor air, outdoor air, and soil did not pose an unacceptable risk to human health. Accordingly, site remediation will not be necessary as long as the Site remains industrial and that soil excavations are not carried out within contaminated areas. Also, use of the passive soil gas samplers provided a cost savings compared to the use of traditional Summa canister collection techniques.

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Project Summary

  • Location: Thyez, France
  • Client: Confidential
  • Project Practice Areas: Contaminated Sites, Environmental Management
  • Type of Facility: Closed Manufacturer
  • Services Provided: Phase I and II environmental site assessments, Soil gas survey, Subsurface investigation, Human Health Risk Assessment
  • Type of Work: Remediation
  • Governing Regulation: Federal and Local