The EPA commenced environmental assessments in Brighton in February 2018 after becoming aware of soil vapour contamination in the area.
The soil vapour contamination from tetrachloroethene (PCE), a chemical commonly used in dry cleaning processes, can pose a risk to the public via inhalation in some indoor settings.
PCE was found in soil vapour on road verges across the assessment area. Testing of indoor air undertaken by the EPA at 5 individual properties indicated there was no vapour intrusion risk to occupants.
Groundwater (bore water) in this area is likely contaminated and should not be used for any purpose. Tap water (mains water supplied by SA Water), soil and rainwater are not affected. Home-grown fruit and vegetables are safe to consume, provided they are not watered with bore water.
More information on soil vapour and groundwater impacts will be collected by a liable party. The EPA will review this information when it becomes available and will determine if further action is necessary.
Chemicals of concern
Tetrachloroethene, also known as tetrachloroethylene, perchloroethylene (perc) or PCE, is a colourless liquid industrial chemical that is widely used for dry cleaning fabrics and for metal cleaning.
For more information on the contaminants, please visit the SA Health website.
The chemical substances found (including PCE) have the potential to change from liquid to gas (volatilise) and move through the soil as vapour. It is then possible for this vapour to migrate and build up in underground spaces such as cellars and basements, as well as move into the indoor air of overlying buildings. This is commonly known as vapour intrusion.
Vapour intrusion testing at 5 properties undertaken on behalf of the EPA indicated there was no PCE present at concentrations above levels considered safe.
There may be a vapour intrusion risk to residences with a basement or cellar. Please contact EPA on (08) 8429 7554 or email should your property has a basement or cellar.
Watch the video about vapour intrusion.
433 Brighton Road
Further assessment is being undertaken by a liable party in relation to a site located at 433 Brighton Road, Brighton. This assessment will be undertaken to assess the nature and extent of site contamination and to determine any risks to human health and the environment. A site contamination audit report is to be provided to the EPA in late March 2024.