🔴 1,400 barrels and drums were found at the former Compounders site in Howell

🔴 The EPA has been working to identify the chemicals

🔴 Water & soil are tested once a container with chemicals inside has been moved

HOWELL — The EPA has established a timetable for clearing barrels of chemicals found at the former Compounders property.

About 400 drums and 1,000 small containers were uncovered during a fire at the property on Marl Road in February. Many of the containers were bulging, rusting, denting, or leaking.

Howell Township officials said Monday it will take six to eight months for the EPA to "open, identify and characterize the contents" of the containers. If the container does not meet Department of Transportation standards for shipping the contents will be transferred to a safe container.

Drums that have not been inspected are being kept in a plastic-lined containment area to prevent spills.

Air monitor installed by the Howell OEM on Marl Road
Air monitor installed by the Howell OEM on Marl Road (Howell OEM)

What was left behind?

The EPA and the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection are examining the soil and groundwater as drums are moved.

EPA will also continue to monitor the air for volatile organic compounds, which are chemicals that can easily evaporate. The air is also being monitored for particulate matter, a mixture of solid particles and liquid droplets found in the air.

Compounds manufactured a number of chemicals including glues, adhesives, and asphalt materials, according to the EPA. The facility closed in 2019 and was sold in 2021 as part of a stock sale.

Dan Alexander is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at dan.alexander@townsquaremedia.com

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