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The Telegram
  • DEC: Environmental study on Union Tools under way

  • The owner of the former Union Tools site began a detailed environmental study on Monday, according to a state Department of Environmental Conservation fact sheet Tuesday.

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  • The owner of the former Union Tools site began a detailed environmental study on Monday, according to a state Department of Environmental Conservation fact sheet Tuesday.
    The Frankfort site, owned by Ames True Temper, will be investigated to define the nature and extent of the contamination in the soil.
    It currently is listed as a Class 2 site, which poses a significant threat to public health or environment and action is required.
    The state Department of Environmental Conservation as well as the state Department of Health will oversee the remedial investigation, which will take surface soil samples, install monitoring wells, monitor groundwater on the site and investigate soil vapor.
    Once the investigation has begun, environmental conservation will conduct a feasibility study in order to determine potential ways to clean up the contamination.
    Union Tools began as Union Fork & Hoe Co. in 1907 and evolved into Frankfort's largest manufacturer, employing several hundred workers at one point. Over the decades, workers streamed into the factory as garden tools and related products poured out.
    Since its closure in 2006, the property has been on the state Department of Environmental Conservation list for remediation due to the dumping of solvents on the plant property. Groundwater and the public well field were contaminated, as well.
    An Aug. 1 fire damaged or destroyed 12 structures, and crews have been working since then to demolish the rest of the buildings and prepare the site for investigation.

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