thumbnail

Potential for advection of volatile organic compounds in ground water to the Cochato River, Baird & McGuire Superfund Site, Holbrook, Massachusetts, March and April 1998

Water-Resources Investigations Report 98-4257

Prepared in cooperation with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
By:
, , and

Links

Abstract

In March and April 1998, a network of water-to-vapor diffusion samplers was installed along the Cochato River at the Baird & McGuire Superfund Site in Holbrook, Massachusetts, where a plume of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) is present in ground water. The purpose of installing the sampler network was to determine if VOCs were present in river-bottom sediments while a ground-water extraction system was operating and after the system had been shut down for two weeks. Water-to-water diffusion samplers placed at selected locations provided supplemental information about concentrations of VOCs in pore water in the river-bottom sediments. Water levels in piezometers and river stage were measured concurrently to determine if ground water was discharging to the river.

Benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylenes (BTEX compounds) were detected in water-tovapor and water-to-water diffusion samplers located in the area where the plume is known to pass beneath the river for both pumping and nonpumping conditions. Concentrations of total BTEX compounds in water-to-vapor diffusion samplers ranged from non-detect upriver and downriver from the plume area to greater than 200 parts per million by volume in the plume area. Concentrations of total BTEX compounds were not significantly different for pumping than for non-pumping conditions. Concentrations of total BTEX compounds in water-to-water diffusion samplers ranged from non-detect to 680 micrograms per liter. The limited number of water-to-water diffusion samplers did not indicate that concentrations were higher for pumping or non-pumping conditions. Trichloroethylene and tetrachloroethylene also were detected in water-to-vapor diffusion samplers downriver from the area where the BTEX compounds were detected. Water levels in four piezometers were consistently higher than the river stage, indicating an upward hydraulic gradient and ground-water discharge to the river. The concentrations of VOCs in riverbottom sediments and the upward hydraulic gradients observed indicate that contaminants from the Baird & McGuire ground-water plume were discharging to the Cochato River during the study period for both pumping and non-pumping conditions. 

Study Area

Additional publication details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Potential for advection of volatile organic compounds in ground water to the Cochato River, Baird & McGuire Superfund Site, Holbrook, Massachusetts, March and April 1998
Series title:
Water-Resources Investigations Report
Series number:
98-4257
Year Published:
1999
Language:
English
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey
Description:
Report: iv, 19 p.; Plate: 30.85 x 21.21 inches
Country:
United States
State:
Massachusetts
City:
Holbrook
Other Geospatial:
Cochato River