An environmental assessment of the Muscatatuck Urban Training Center near Butlerville in Jennings County, Indiana, was completed during October and November 2005. As part of the Department of Defense Earth Science Program, the U.S. Geological Survey collected information about environmental conditions at the 825-acre former State of Indiana mental health facility prior to its conversion by the Indiana National Guard into an urban training center. The assessment was designed to investigate the type and extent of potential contamination associated with historical activities in selected areas of the facility.
Samples of surface water, ground water, surface soil, and buried sediment were collected for the assessment in seven geographic study areas. Surface-water samples were collected from flowing and pooled surface water, as well as seeps and springs where ground water discharged at the land surface. Ground-water samples were collected from temporary wells installed in boreholes drilled to bedrock. Surface-soil samples were collected near sites of possible contamination. Buried-sediment samples were taken from core material collected near the top of bedrock at depths of 6.4 to 26 feet. For the assessment, 59 environmental, 22 quality-assurance, and 46 laboratory-blank samples were analyzed for as many as 65 volatile organic compounds, 62 semivolatile organic compounds, 20 trace elements, 10 inorganic cations and anions, 3 nutrients, and 4 water-quality characteristics.
Concentrations of constituents detected in these samples were compared with regulatory standards (the Indiana Surface-Water-Quality Standards and Indiana Ground-Water-Quality Standards) and guidance criteria from the Indiana Department of Environmental Management's Risk Integrated System of Closures for contaminated soil and ground water. Standards or criteria were exceeded by 17 constituent concentrations in 11 environmental samples from 5 of the 7 geographic study areas. Standards or criteria were exceeded for 10 constituents: ammonia, arsenic, benzo(a)pyrene, beryllium, chloride, chloroform, copper, lead, sulfate, and zinc.
Additional publication details
USGS Numbered Series
Environmental Assessment of the Muscatatuck Urban Training Center near Butlerville, Indiana, October and November 2005