State expected to OK $81,175 for cleanup of gasoline spill

Soil was contaminated at Springfield Hospital

May 27, 1999|By Mary Gail Hare | Mary Gail Hare,SUN STAFF

The state Board of Public Works is expected to approve $81,175 next week to clean up a minor gasoline spill at Springfield Hospital Center in Sykesville.

The spill involved soil only and has had no adverse effect on any water supply, state officials said yesterday.

"The contamination is basically around the site," said Quentin Banks, spokesman for the Maryland Department of the Environment. "There is no threat to private wells."

Frequent monitoring and ground-water sampling have shown no contamination to water sources for the hospital or to private wells for the past four years, Banks said.

An underground 10,000-gallon gasoline storage tank was removed in 1995 from the hospital pumping station near the McKeldin Building. Holes were in the tank, with minor contamination to the ground, said officials at the Department of the Environment.

The soil contamination could have come from above ground, said Dave Humphrey, spokesman for the state Department of General Services. The 70-year-old pumping station was used by the hospital to refuel its motor pool and maintenance equipment.

"This was a spill area, and there could have been runoff into the ground," said Humphrey. He also stressed, "There has been no water source contamination as a result of the leakage."

Since the tank was removed, the state has ordered frequent ground-water sampling. It has decided on "more active" measures, said Banks.

"We have been monitoring wells and have decided on a more aggressive approach," Banks said.

The work involves removing and disposing of the contaminated soil and refilling the site with clean soil. It was the least expensive of four options considered. The costliest was more than $1 million.

The contract will go to Century Engineering Inc., a Towson company that has done extensive site investigation and testing as part of its contract to monitor the site.

The cleanup, which is expected to take 60 days, involves excavation, soil removal, test borings, disposal, reconstruction and quarterly monitoring.

"By virtue of their experience at this site, Century Engineering, Inc. has intimate knowledge of the scope and nature of the problems and an understanding of its history," said a news release from general services.

Removing the tank was in response to a federal requirement to upgrade all underground gas tanks and clean surrounding soils, said Banks.

Pub Date: 5/27/99

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