Immediate Response Actions Related to Fuel Oil Spill in a Private Residence
Weston & Sampson was selected by the Town of North Reading to perform emergency response and Licensed Site Professional (LSP) activities related to the release of more than 200 gallons of #2 fuel oil in a private residence. The release was a result of a water main break flooding the basement of the residence, floating the oil tank and releasing its contents to the concrete floor and earthen basement sump. Prior to Weston & Sampson’s involvement, water and oil from the basement was mistakenly pumped to the unpaved road shoulder and downgradient catch basin.
Weston & Sampson conducted Immediate Response Actions (IRAs) on behalf of the town to assess and mitigate the release, including:
- Observation of oil spill cleanup activities
- Coordination of resident relocation
- Soil excavation and off-site disposal from the roadway shoulder, unlined sump, and downslope catch basin
- Inspection of the receiving stream to confirm absence of petroleum impacts
- Impacted building material (e.g., concrete, wood, drywall) removal/disposal
- Field screening and sampling of sub-slab soil and soil gas
- Installation of soil borings, monitoring wells, and soil gas monitoring points
- Sampling of soil, groundwater, soil gas, and indoor air
- Evaluation of remedial alternatives to mitigate a Critical Exposure Pathway
- Preparation of IRA status reports
Weston & Sampson conducted all soil gas and indoor air screening/sampling in accordance with the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for Indoor Air Contamination, August 2007 (BWSC-07-01). As a result of regularly working with DEP’s staff, Weston & Sampson was able to eliminate indoor air parameters that were detected, but not associated with the release. These parameters were eliminated based on the results of concurrent outdoor ambient air sampling and the use of products in the house containing these parameters. These products were discovered during an investigation of potential sources of petroleum conducted prior to indoor air sampling events.
During these investigations, a second unused/abandoned aboveground storage tank was discovered in a masonry enclosure adjacent to the ruptured tank. We removed this tank and several tons of soil beneath it. Following three months of cleanup and restoration efforts, indoor air concentrations dissipated to typical indoor air concentrations.