The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of the Army Environmental and Natural Resources Management Office of the U.S. Army Signal Center and Fort Gordon, assessed soil gas, surface water, and soil for contaminants at the Installation Railhead (IR) at Fort Gordon, Georgia, from October 2008 to September 2009. The assessment included delineation of organic contaminants present in soil-gas samples beneath the IR, and in a surface-water sample collected from an unnamed tributary to Marcum Branch in the western part of the IR. Inorganic contaminants were determined in a surface-water sample and in soil samples. This assessment was conducted to provide environmental contamination data to Fort Gordon personnel pursuant to requirements of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act Part B Hazardous Waste Permit process.
Soil-gas samples collected within a localized area on the western part of the IR contained total petroleum hydrocarbons; benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and total xylenes (referred to as BTEX); and naphthalene above the method detection level. These soil-gas samples were collected where buildings had previously stood. Soil-gas samples collected within a localized area contained perchloroethylene (PCE). These samples were collected where buildings 2410 and 2405 had been. Chloroform and toluene were detected in a surface-water sample collected from an unnamed tributary to Marcum Branch but at concentrations below the National Primary Drinking Water Standard maximum contaminant level (MCL) for each compound. Iron was detected in the surface-water sample at 686 micrograms per liter (ug/L) and exceeded the National Secondary Drinking Water Standard MCL for iron. Metal concentrations in composite soil samples collected at three locations from land surface to a depth of 6 inches did not exceed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Regional Screening Levels for industrial soil.