Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Blog #42 - Broadway Video Store Closure

As many of you may know, Broadway Video Store at 711 Center Blvd. (Fair Anslem Center) closed its doors on Monday, October 12, 2009 due to the owner, George Bianchini deciding to close due to a report he received from Environmental Resource Group stating that there are high levels of PCE (perchloroethylene) which is used in the dry cleaning business. The dry cleaning business next door to Broadway Video no longer uses the active ingredient in PCE as of January of this year. This is a voluntary closure by the owner of Broadway Video. It is unknown when the video store may re-open.

The report from Environmental Resource Group was commissioned by Mr. Bianchini. Environmental Resource Group was clear in their report that,

"...definition and evaluation of environmental conditions is difficult and inexact science. Judgments leading to conclusions are generally made with incomplete knowledge of the conditions present. More extensive studies can reduce the inherent uncertainties. The soil-gas sampling performed for this investigation was performed for preliminary screening purposes. More accurate and confirmation sampling would be needed for risk assessment purposes."

The Marin County Environmental Health Department is investigating the situation. After they review the report written by Environmental Resource Group and visit the site they may determine that confirmation sampling is needed.

A clean bill of health was issued after the 2001 clean up of PCE at the Fair Anselm site. All of the other businesses in Fair Anselm are open.

Industrial Hygienist, Paul Spillane has stated that the levels of PCE at the site are "unlikely to be harmful to customers or casual visitors." and he went on to state that, "the percentages in the report refer to long-term exposure levels and this is not an immediate health hazard".

PCE is legal and is used by both the film and dry cleaning business. PCE is being phased out in the dry cleaning business as new technologies are available and are non toxic.

As of the posting of this blog no federal, state or local agency has evaluated the site. County Environmental Health will have more information soon. The Independent Journal published an article on Tuesday, October 13, 2009 related to the video store.

I will update this blog as new information becomes available.