Site Mitigation & Restoration Program

We protect and maintain California’s land and places
by setting strict standards for land restoration and cleanup

Cleanup Plan for Brawley Radiator Shop Available for Public Review Fact Sheet

December 2009*

Overhead aerial view displaying the Brawley Radiator Shop location on E Street near N 5th

A draft plan to remove contaminated soil at Brawley Radiator Shop is available for public review and comment. Lead and arsenic were found above acceptable levels at the site which is located at 556 E Street, in Brawley. The draft plan, called a Removal Action Workplan (RAW) was prepared by California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC).

This fact sheet provides information on:

  • Why Cleanup Is Necessary
  • History and Operations at the Site
  • Proposed Plan
  • Safety and Dust Control During Cleanup
  • Next Steps
  • Where to Find the Documents
  • Who to Contact for Information

Why Cleanup Is Necessary

DTSC recommended that a cleanup plan be prepared to address the elevated levels of lead, and arsenic.

Arsenic and Lead

Although arsenic and lead are metals that occur naturally in soil, they are also used in manufacturing processes.

DTSC will oversee the cleanup and will ensure that it is performed in a manner that does not harm people or the environment.

The DTSC, a department within the California Environmental Protection Agency, is responsible for overseeing the site environmental investigation and ensuring that mitigation and cleanup activities are conducted in accordance with state and federal laws and regulations.

History and Operations at the Site

The Brawley Radiator Site is approximately 50 feet by 100 feet. The property contains two structures, the Brawley Radiator Shop building and the Automobile Glass Repair Shop. The Automobile Glass Repair Shop is not being addressed in this cleanup plan. Land use in the surrounding area is a mixture of commercial and industrial. Residential areas and two schools are located within a quarter mile of the property.

Repair of automobile and heavy equipment radiators has been conducted at the site since 1974. Chemicals used at the site include acids, bases, chrome, nickel, copper, and cyanide.

Environmental Investigations

A Preliminary Endangerment Assessment investigation was conducted in 2007 and 2008. During this investigation the soil, soil gas and groundwater were tested to determine if the radiator repair operations released hazardous substances. The results of these tests showed one area of concern located in the hazardous waste storage area
at the site.

Proposed Cleanup Options

The following three cleanup options were considered for this site:

  • Alternative 1 – No Action
  • Alternative 2 – Containment/Capping-in-Place)/ Institutional Control
  • Alternative 3 – Excavation and Off-Site Disposal (dig and remove)

After careful analysis, Alternative 3 is recommended because it protects human health and the environment, is permanent, and has a reasonable cost.

Proposed Plan

As indicated above, the amount of lead and arsenic are above acceptable levels at one area of the site. The draft cleanup plan using Alternative 3, will require that an estimated 20 to 40 cubic yards of contaminated soil be dug out and removed. After the contaminated soil is removed, samples will be taken to confirm that the contamination has been removed. The excavated areas will then be backfilled with imported clean soil and compacted.

The cleanup activities are anticipated to begin in early 2010. The proposed field work will take less than five (5) days to complete and will occur Monday through Friday from 6:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Safety and Dust Control During Cleanup

In order to ensure safety of the public and the workers on site, the following actions will be taken to minimize dust during the proposed cleanup:

  • Temporary fencing with windscreens will be installed for security
  • The work areas will be sprayed or misted with clean water to prevent dust
  • Stockpiled soils will be covered
  • All vehicles will maintain slow speeds while on the property
  • The trucks will be secured with covers before they leave the site
  • The air will be monitored at the site to ensure the amount of dust stays at safe

California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA)

In compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), DTSC has prepared a draft Notice of Exemption (NOE) for this project. The NOE states that the proposed cleanup will not have a significant negative effect on human health and the environment. This is due to the removal’s short duration, relatively small amount of contaminated soil to be removed, and the controlled way in which the contaminated soil will be dug out, loaded onto trucks and taken away to an approved/ permitted facility for lawful disposal.

Next Steps

At the close of the public comment period, DTSC will review and consider all public comments and make any necessary revisions to the draft RAW prior to final approval. A Response to Comments document will be mailed to anyone who provides their name and address. After the cleanup process is completed, confirmation soil sampling will be conducted to verify cleanup goals have been met and submit a Removal Action Completion Report to DTSC for review and approval.

Where to Find Site Documents

Copies of the Draft RAW and other site documents are available at the following locations:

Brawley Public Library
400 Main Street
Brawley, CA 92227
(760) 344-0212
Sunday-Monday: Closed
Tuesday-Thursday: Noon to 8:00 p.m.
Friday-Saturday: 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Department of Toxic Substances Control
Regional Records Office
5796 Corporate Avenue
Cypress, CA 90630
Contact: Julie Johnson, (714) 484-5337
Hours: Monday – Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Site documents are also available for review

Who to Contact for Information

If you have any questions about the project or cleanup activities, please contact the following persons:

Rania Zabaneh, Project Manager
Department of Toxic Substances Control
5796 Corporate Avenue
Cypress, CA 90630
(714) 484-5479

Jeanne Matsumoto, Public Participation Specialist
Department of Toxic Substances Control
5796 Corporate Avenue
Cypress, CA 90630
(714) 484-5338 or
toll free 1-866-495-5651 press option 4, then 6

For Media Inquiries

Russ Edmondson, DTSC Public Information Officer
(916) 323-3372

Notice to Hearing-Impaired Individuals You can obtain additional information about the site by using the California State Relay Service at (888) 877 5378 (TDD), or by calling Jeanne Matsumoto, DTSC Public Participation Specialist, at (714) 484-5338.


This fact sheet does not replace or supersede relevant statutes and regulations. The information contained in this fact sheet is based upon the statutes and regulations in effect as of the date of the fact sheet. Interested parties should keep apprised of subsequent changes to relevant statutes and regulations.