VERTEX was retained by an international property and casualty insurance carrier to assist them in their review and investigation of a claim made by a pharmaceutical manufacturing company on their environmental pollution insurance policy.
The claim pertained to an allegation that a new release of methylene chloride had occurred at the insured company’s manufacturing plant, resulting in a large magnitude increase in methylene chloride concentration that had been observed in groundwater in a deep monitoring well at the site. This allegation was made by a previous facility owner under whose prior ownership a documented release of methylene chloride had occurred in the 1990s, resulting in soil and groundwater contamination that was being remediated by the prior owner, who was deemed the responsible party by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC), the regulatory authority.
VERTEX performed a review of available historical technical reports and data generated during several phases of site investigation performed during the period from 1996 to the present time. Based on review of the available information, VERTEX concluded that a new release of methylene chloride had not occurred at the Site, the occurrence of a new release was not supported by the available data, and that the recently observed concentration increase in the deep well could be clearly explained as having resulted from remobilization of residual methylene chloride in soil attributable to the historic release, which was strongly supported by the available data and technical information.