Town of Cheraw

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EPA Response to PCB Sediment in Homes in Cheraw, SC

As part of the ongoing response to Hurricane Florence, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) continues to conduct ground assessments at communities with Superfund sites in storm-impacted areas, including Cheraw, South Carolina.

Tributaries to the Pee Dee River flooded parts of Cheraw and deposited sediment into five homes. On Sept. 22, EPA oversaw sampling of the five homes and received the sampling results in the late afternoon of Sept. 25, which showed detectable concentrations of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in sediments deposited inside four of the five homes and in the crawl space of the fifth home.

EPA's priority is to protect public health and the environment in the affected area. EPA is working closely with the affected families, and is also coordinating with the mayor of Cheraw, other local officials and the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control on response activities.

EPA took immediate action and notified the residents of the impacted homes. Temporary accommodations are being offered to the residents of the four homes where PCB sediment was found in living spaces. EPA is offering temporary accommodations to protect the health of affected families while response actions are evaluated and implemented to remove PCBs from the impacted homes. The temporary housing will extend until removal actions are completed and additional sampling data verifies the results. EPA is overseeing cleanup work in the affected homes beginning today.

EPA considers PCBs a probable human carcinogen. PCBs have low acute toxicity. They accumulate in the environment and can pose risks to human health over longer-term exposure.

Background

The Burlington Industries Superfund site is located in Cheraw, South Carolina. The Site was added to the National Priorities List in May 2018. EPA took early action in 2017 using its Superfund removal authority to address soil contamination at several residential properties near the site. EPA has entered into an Administrative Order with Highland Industries to address Site-related contamination. Additional information on the Burlington Industries Superfund site may be found at: https://www.epa.gov/superfund/burlington-cheraw

EPA continues to conduct ground assessments at targeted Superfund sites in other storm-impacted areas in South Carolina, North Carolina, and Tennessee, and has completed its assessments in Georgia. As assessments continue, EPA will take action to address any impacts discovered.

Davina Marraccini

Special Assistant to the Chief of Staff (Detail)

U.S. EPA Region 4

404-562-8293 (office)

404-387-4368 (cell)

marraccini.davina@epa.gov

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