SALEM Toxic site office will be closed

Inquiries being made at the office are tapering, prompting the closing.
SALEM -- After more than a decade in operation, a satellite office devoted to providing information about the cleanup of a toxic chemical site near town is closing.
In announcing the move this week, Rutgers Organics Corp. of State College, Pa., said its office at 536 E. State St. in Salem no longer was receiving enough visitors or calls to warrant keeping it open past the end of this month.
"There is now so little activity that we do not see a need to keep it open," said Dr. Rainer Domalski, a Rutgers manager.
Recently, the office has averaged about one or two calls or visits monthly, Domalski said.
Five or six years ago, about 10 to 15 inquiries were made at the office each month.
Questions answered: The office's closing "doesn't mean we won't answer any questions" about the former Nease Chemical Co. site, Domalski said.
Anyone with inquiries is welcome to call the company at (800) 458-3434, ext. 200.
Domalski noted that questions also may be directed to the U.S. and Ohio environmental protection agencies.
Rutgers owns the former Nease site, northwest of Salem in Perry Township along state Route 14, and is participating in its cleanup.
Mirex contamination: The aim of state and federal environmental officials is to eventually rid the 44-acre site of toxic levels of mirex, a pesticide produced by the Nease plant before it closed in 1973.
Mirex may cause cancer if people have extended contact with it, state environmental officials have said.

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