The Santa Monica-Malibu Board of Education has awarded an emergency contract to have an estimated 30 truckloads of contaminated soil removed from district property.
Rory Livingston, the district's business services administrator, said the tainted soil was found around a 50-year-old abandoned, underground diesel storage tank on land that the district has leased to the developer of an office complex at 900 Colorado Ave.
Construction workers discovered the tank in October. Tests showed that the ground water supply had not been contaminated, he said.
The Board of Educated awarded a $58,000 contract Tuesday night to Frank Garcia Inc. of Agoura to haul the soil to a toxic landfill in Kettleman City in the Central Valley.
State and federal laws require the removal of tainted soil and obsolete fuel tanks to eliminate the possibility of chemicals in the fuel seeping into the ground water--a major source of drinking water in the state.
Livingston said the district has already spent $20,000 to test and stockpile the fuel-soaked soil, estimated at about 300 cubic feet of earth or an amount equal to about 30 truck loads. The leaking fuel tank has already been removed, he said.
The soil will be removed from 1.68 acres where the district once kept most of its supplies and transportation vehicles. The district later moved its operations and leased the property for a 90,000-square-feet office complex, expected to be completed in August.
In August, Livingston said, the district paid $7,000 to remove soil contaminated by a "minor leak" from one of five 6,000- to 10,000-gallon fuel tanks that had been on the Colorado Avenue property. Livingston said the larger leak came from a tank that had been long forgotten. All of the tanks have now been removed.
"We had blue prints that indicated that the tank was once on the property, but we didn't know where. We also didn't know whether it had been moved or not," he said. "Our guess is that it was 40 or 50 years old and may have been used by the city before the district bought the property."