After years of successful remediation efforts, The Beloit Corporation Superfund Site in Rockton, Illinois is still an environmental hazard of vast proportions. Due to the presence of heavy metals like lead and mercury, the site was placed on the National Priorities List (NPL) and designated as a Superfund site by the EPA. Unfortunately, in 2021, a catastrophic fire erupted on the site elevating the levels of heavy metals detected in the area and causing an evacuation order in the area as toxic chemicals spewed into the air above Rockton, IL.

The History of the Beloit Corp. Superfund Site

Located in Rockton, Illinois, the Beloit Corp. Superfund Site was once home to a paper-making equipment manufacturer. The facility produced various types of machinery, including those used in the production of paper mills and other manufacturing processes. The site was later identified as a significant source of environmental pollution, primarily due to the improper disposal of hazardous waste.

As remediation efforts began, the site was listed on the National Priorities List in 1990. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has been overseeing the cleanup efforts, which have included the installation of a groundwater pump-and-treat system to ensure that the contaminants created by the Beloit Corporation do not spread throughout the groundwater in the surrounding area.

Unfortunately, after the cleanup was completed and remediation was mostly successful, a catastrophic fire broke out at the site in June 2021. The EPA was quick to respond and they found elevated levels of metals in groundwater, yet again, along with VOCs and carbon monoxide in the air. The EPA is continuing to monitor the situation, and just how far back the fire set remediation efforts remains yet to be determined.

The Beloit Corp. Superfund Site serves as an example of the importance of environmental law and the consequences of improper disposal of hazardous materials. The chemicals found at the site, including arsenic, have been linked to various health issues, including cancer. It is our mission at OnderLaw to ensure that industries dispose of their waste responsibly to protect the health of the community and the environment.

Chemicals and Contaminants Found at the Site

The Beloit Corporation Superfund site in Illinois has been found to be contaminated with several hazardous chemicals, including a number of heavy metals such as mercury, arsenic, and lead. These chemicals are known to be both a threat to public health and long-lasting in the environment.

In addition to the heavy metals found at the site, trichloroethane (TCE) and cyanide, were found throughout the sediment and soil surrounding the site. These chemicals can lead to serious health effects for anybody exposed to them, and it’s crucial that those living or working nearby are aware of the dangers they present.

These contaminants are a significant concern for the community and workers in the area, and it is essential that cleanup efforts at the Beloit Corporation Superfund site are successful in removing these contaminants to ensure that further exposure does not occur.

Health Effects on the Community and Workers

The Beloit Corp. Superfund Site has had a significant impact on the health of the surrounding community and workers. Exposure to the toxic chemicals and contaminants found at the site, including cyanide, TCE, mercury, arsenic, and lead, can result in serious health consequences.

Cyanide exposure can cause symptoms ranging from headaches and nausea to coma and death. TCE exposure is associated with liver and kidney damage, as well as an increased risk of cancer. Exposure to heavy metals, such as Mercury and arsenic, can cause neurological damage, various forms of cancer, and cardiovascular disease. Lead exposure can result in developmental delays in children, behavioral issues, and even death with prolonged exposure.

The long-term health consequences of exposure to the chemicals at the Beloit Corp. Superfund Site are still being studied, but it is clear that the effects can be devastating. It is essential that legal action is taken to hold those responsible for the contamination accountable and to ensure that the site is fully cleaned up to protect the health of current and future generations.

Possible Legal Action and Cleanup Efforts

As the devastating effects of the Beloit Corp. Superfund site continue to be revealed, affected parties may consider pursuing legal action against the company responsible for the contamination. The effects of pollution and the dangers associated with it could lead to both mass tort and class action lawsuits.

A mass tort lawsuit involves multiple parties suing the responsible party for injuries suffered as a result of exposure to a harmful substance. A class action lawsuit allows a large group of people with similar grievances to sue a common defendant.

Both of these legal actions can provide the affected parties with financial compensation for damages suffered as a result of exposure to toxic chemicals.

In addition to potential compensation, pursuing legal action encourages corporations to take adequate steps to ensure environmental disasters like this one do not occur in the future. At OnderLawyers, we strive to protect communities from corporate negligence.

If you or your community has been impacted by the pollution at the Beloit Corp. Superfund site, or any Superfund site, contact us for a free consultation today.