Mercury Remediation

Rader has performed numerous mercury remediation projects ranging in size from thermometer spills to soil remediation in large industrial settings. The following is an example of a project Rader completed that required a diverse remediation plan.

Rader completed a major mercury abatement project for the Texas A&M University system on one of their Texas campuses. This was a 46,000 ft² science building constructed in the early 1960′s. It was used for research and teaching and became contaminated with mercury throughout the entire building.

Based significantly on our previous mercury abatement experiences, Rader was selected for a pilot program designed to develop procedures for abating the entire building. We worked closely with Texas A&M’s representatives and an oversight engineering firm. Based on our performance, the value we brought to the project and overall schedule requirements we also were awarded the subsequent contract for cleaning the entire building. Texas A&M realized a project savings of approximately 45% of the remediation budget.

Non budgeted saving were also realized by Texas A&M. Rader’s experience and knowledge was utilized to abate fixed furnishings, shelving, furniture, expensive laboratory equipment and valued documents.

Through the planning stages of the project, Texas A&M referenced a review by the National Academy of Sciences (NAS). The review supported the EPA’s Reference Dose (RfD) but used different cohorts (Pacific Islanders), effects (mild memory loss) and a 30x factor (for uncertainties). The Boston Naming Test was used to measure changes in recognition / recall (nominal dysphasia). In support of the review, Texas A&M adopted this 30x factor, and set the clean up criteria as an average of 1.3 ug/m ³ and an action level of 3.0 ug/m ³.

At the end of the abatement process clearance sampling was performed. Temperatures were elevated in the building to 95 ° F. Blowers were used to simulate normal building activity during the sampling process. Over 30 NIOSH sample points were placed on each floor. The Lumex was also used for “snapshots” during the sampling process. The final clearance sample results are as follows:

  NIOSH 6009 Lumex
Basement Not Available 0.68
ug/m ³
First Floor 0.81
ug/m ³
0.65
ug/m ³
Second Floor 0.65
ug/m ³
0.65
ug/m ³
Third Floor 0.86
ug/m ³
0.77
ug/m ³
Fourth Floor Not Available 0.12
ug/m ³

Included in the final results is a notable similarity between NIOSH sampling and Lumex field screening analysis.

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