Companies Agree to $5.4 Million Settlement to Clean Up South Carolina Site

EPA announced that a consent degree with Dixie-Narco Inc., Maytag Corp. and Rheem Manufacturing Co. that will provide for the cleanup of contaminated soils, sediments and groundwater at the Admiral Home Appliances Superfund Alternative site in Williston, Barnwell County, S.C.

Under the terms of the consent decree, reached on July 16, the companies agreed to conduct and fund the cleanup selected in EPA's record of decision, issued on Sept. 28, 2006, and to pay all of EPA's interim and future costs with respect to the site. The remedy, which is estimated to cost more than $5.4 million, will result in the excavation and off-site disposal of more 3,500 cubic yards of contaminated soils and sediments from a former lagoon and wetland discharge area, wetland and stream bank restoration, and cleanup of contaminated groundwater.

"This settlement shows that effective results can be achieved when parties choose to focus their efforts on cooperation, protecting the public, and cleaning up the environment," said Jimmy Palmer, EPA Region 4 administrator. "I am pleased the parties have agreed to remedy the problem in a proactive manner."

The Admiral Home Appliances site is located on County Road 65 in Williston, in a rural area of Barnwell County. The site is composed of two areas divided by County Road 65. The first area is west of County Road 65 and is an active soft-drink vending machine manufacturing facility currently owned and operated by Dixie-Narco. The second area is east of County Road 65 and was the site of the former Imhoff Septic System. Operations at the site began in 1966 when Chill Chest Inc. began operating a freezer manufacturing plant at the site. Industrial wastewater discharges were sent to the Imhoff System from 1966 through 1982.

Prior operations, including operation of the Imhoff System, have caused the site to become contaminated with benzene, carbon tetrachloride, dichloromethane, 1,1-dichloroethene, tetrachloroethene, trichloroethylene, mercury, and nickel in groundwater; chromium, nickel, and zinc in hydric soils and sediments; chromium, copper, nickel, and zinc in surface water; and Bis(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate, chromium, iron, nickel, and zinc in the equalization lagoon.

The proposed consent decree, lodged in the U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina on July 16, is subject to a 30-day public comment period and court review and approval. A copy of the consent decree can be obtained on the U.S. Justice Department Web site,, and at EPA's regional office in Atlanta.

This article originally appeared in the 07/01/2007 issue of Environmental Protection.

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