american chemical service, inc.


The American Chemical Service, Inc. (ACS) site is located at 420 S Colfax, Griffith, Indiana. The ACS site consists of the 15-acre ACS operating facility area and about 5 acres of surrounding wetlands located north of a set of abondoned railroad tracks. The site also consists of the 13-acre "Off-site Containment Area" and the "Kapica Pazmey Area." ACS began operations in 1955 as a solvent recovery firm (later receiving interim status under the newly-passed (in 1976) Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) statute) and as a chemical manufacturer. Upon losing its interim status under RCRA in 1990, ACS ceased its solvent reclamation activities and began to operate solely as a chemical manufacturer. The Kapica Pazmey Area property was the site of a separate chemical drum reconditioning operation. From 1955 until at least 1975, ACS disposed of a variety of hazardous wastes that were produced during company operations into an area on the southern portion of its property ( the "Offsite Containment Area"). ACS also disposed of numerous drums containing waste chemicals and the remainder of solvent recovery distillations in different areas of the northern portion of the property. In addition, ACS accepted quantities of waste chemicals from outside sources for disposal in an incinerator it had built on the property. Incinerator ash was disposed of on the ACS site. In 1972, the Indiana State Board of Health (ISBH) responded to residents' complaints and inspected the ACS facility. From 1972 to 1973, ISBH attempted to achieve improvements in ACS waste handling, spill prevention, and site maintenance standard operating procedures. In 1974 and 1975, ISBH also responded to reports that ACS was discharging chemicals into the sanitary sewer and dumping chemicals on its property. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) placed the ACS site on the National Priorities List (NPL) in 1989, and completed a remedial investigation and feasibility study (RI/FS) at the ACS site in 1992. EPA determined that the ACS site may contain the remnants of an estimated 35,000 buried chemical drums (which may or may not still contain their contents) and pigment and resin sludges containing contaminants such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). The VOCs are a source of the groundwater contaminant plume beneath the site. Approximately 10,000 people live within three miles of the site, with the closest residence located less than one-quarter mile away. About 50 homes are located in the immediate vicinity of the site, which is also surrounded by railroad tracks, drainage ditches, and marshy areas. More than 2,000 private wells are in use within the site area.

Hazardous Ranking Score

35 / 100

A score of 28.5 or higher qualifies a site for the Superfund National Priority List.

Regional Contact

Region 5
Phone: (312) 353-2000

Contact Region



Site Inspection
Preliminary Assessment
Final Listing On NPL

Contaminants & Health Effects

      Endocrine Disrupter
      Reproductive Toxin
      Persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic


        African American
        American Indian and Alaska Native
        Native Hawaiian


        People living
        within a 1 mile radius


        Average Income


        Occupied homes

        Potentially Responsible Parties

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