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EPA releases report after March Walmart distribution center fire

plainfield walmart fire damage 3.jpg
Posted at 5:14 PM, Jun 16, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-16 17:14:10-04

PLAINFIELD — The Environmental Protection Agency has released a nearly 900 page report about the March 16 Walmart warehouse fire.

Air monitoring and sampling, as well as fire ash debris samples, were taken and analyzed in the days after the fire.

The EPA's field monitoring measurements found levels of particulate matter (PM) above screening levels in the area where residents were encouraged to shelter in place. Fire ash and debris were generated for miles.

PM, a mixture of solid particles and liquid droplets found in the air, can cause serious health problems.

Asbestos was not detected in the EPA samples, but the amount of benzene and arsenic found in samples exceeded the regional screening levels (RSL). Additionally, the report limit for 1,2-Dibromo 3-Chloropropane and thallium were above the EPA's removal management levels (RML) and regional screening levels (RSL).

"Concentrations EPA detected at Plainfield Warehouse Fire are not expected to result in adverse health effects for short exposure durations, such as a fire lasting several days," the EPA's website said.

The EPA says these volatile organic compounds (VOC) were located through sampling and lab analysis:

  • Propene
  • Dichlorodifluoromethane
  • Chloromethane
  • Ethanol
  • Acetone
  • Trichlorofluoromethane
  • Isopropyl Alcohol
  • n-Hexane
  • Benzene
  • Carbon Tetrachloride
  • Toluene
  • Tetrachloroethene
  • m,p-Xylenes

To read the full EPA report, click here.

In March, Walmart announced the entire facility would close because of the extent of the damage.

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