Trenton, NJ 08625-0360
January 9, 2002
T. DiFerdinando, Jr., MD, MPH
Further Information Contact:
Laura Otterbourg or Dennis McGowan
- The New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS)
and the federal Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
(ATSDR) have released for public comment a
public health consultation on Mile Run Brook, a publicly accessible
area of wetlands located downstream of Rhodia, Inc., a manufacturer
of specialty chemicals located in New Brunswick.
draft consultation concludes that although soil and water samples
from Mile Run Brook contained contaminants at levels above health
screening guidelines, it is unlikely that people will come in contact
with the contaminants in large enough quantities to affect their
health. The agencies' assessment that these known exposures do not
pose an apparent public health hazard, however, is based on limited
sampling and could change with the availability of new data from
either the Rhodia, Inc. site or Mile Run Brook.
DHSS and ATSDR are recommending that, as a precaution, persons entering
the Mile Run Brook area should minimize contact with contaminated
soil, sediment and surface water, and that appropriate clothing
and equipment should be used to limit skin exposure by volunteers
who participate in clean-up activities there. The DHSS and ATSDR
are also recommending that children should avoid unnecessary contact
with soil and water along Mile Run Brook. They note the area also
contains many physical hazards that should be avoided by both children
evaluate potential public health implications associated with the
Rhodia, Inc. site, soil, sediment and surface water samples were
taken along the banks of Mile Run Brook and analyzed. Soil samples
were found to contain several polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs),
polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), arsenic, cadmium, and lead at
levels above health screening guidelines. Testing of surface water
samples detected trichloroethene and methylene chloride at levels
above New Jersey standards. Camphor, a common component of cosmetic
and pharmaceutical products, was also found at low levels in soil
and surface water samples.
public is invited to submit written comments on the draft health
consultation through February 9, 2002, to: New Jersey Department
of Health and Senior Services, Consumer and Environmental Health
Services, P.O. Box 369, Trenton NJ 08625-0369.
of the document and an accompanying citizens'
guide are available for public review at the Middlesex County
Public Health Department, JFK Square, 5th Floor in New Brunswick;
the New Brunswick Public Library at 60 Livingston Street; the Franklin
Township Health Department at 935 Hamilton Street; and Franklin
Public Library at 485 Demott Lane. Copies may also be obtained by
calling the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services
at 609-588-3120, or by visiting the department's web site at www.state.nj.us/health.