Tukwila company signs cleanup agreement with Dept. of Ecology

The former owner and operator of an industrial site along the Duwamish Waterway in Tukwila has signed an agreement with the Washington Department of Ecology to test soil and groundwater for contamination, a step toward planning a future cleanup, the state said Friday (June 16).

Ecology invites the public to review and comment on the agreement, called an agreed order, through July 11, 2017.

The order covers the 21-acre Jorgensen Forge Corp. site at 78531 East Marginal Way S. It outlines a process to investigate contamination, study cleanup options, and develop a cleanup plan.

Earlier studies and a partial cleanup
The manufacturer of large-scale specialty metal products partially investigated the site in the 1990s and 2000s. These studies identified contaminants – including polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), petroleum compounds and metals – in soil and groundwater.

Jorgensen Forge conducted partial cleanup work in 2014 under a 2007 agreed order with Ecology. In 2015, Ecology issued an enforcement order to the company directing it to take further steps in the cleanup process. The company declared bankruptcy in 2016. 

The new agreed order – with the site’s former owner, Earle M. Jorgensen Co. – is expected to lead to a final cleanup, starting with a full investigation of contamination at the site.  

Part of the Lower Duwamish Waterway cleanup
The cleanup will contribute to a larger effort to control sources of contamination in Lower Duwamish Waterway sediments. Ecology and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency jointly oversee the Lower Duwamish Waterway cleanup, a stretch of approximately 5 miles of waterway upstream from Harbor Island. 

Ecology oversees a variety of efforts to control sources of pollution that could re-contaminate waterway sediments after cleanup – including cleanups at contaminated sites along or near the Duwamish. Ecology’s efforts include agreed orders for cleanup studies or other actions at 18 sites along or near the Duwamish Waterway. 

Cleanup information
Information about the site’s contamination and cleanup process is available at:

  • Ecology’s website.
  • Seattle Public Library South Park Branch, 8604 8th Ave. S.
  • Ecology’s Northwest Regional Office, 3190 160th Ave. S.E., Bellevue. By appointment: 425-649-7190

Comments or technical questions may be submitted to Maureen Sánchez, site manager, 425-649-7254, or Department of Ecology, 3190 160th Ave. S.E., Bellevue WA, 98004-5452.

An Ecology fact sheet provides additional information about the site and the order.

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