Columbia Analytical Services


Test Available For Petroleum Hydrocarbon Contamination In Air


Columbia Analytical Services, Inc. (CAS) is excited to announce the availability of an Air Petroleum Hydrocarbon (APH) method for indoor air, ambient air, sub-slab, and soil vapor analysis via a method by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP).

Originally written for application at Massachusetts hazardous waste cleanup sites, the APH method can be applied at any site nationwide where petroleum products are potentially impacting indoor or ambient air quality. This method was designed to complement and support the toxicological approach developed to evaluate human health hazards that may result from exposure to petroleum hydrocarbons.

In February 2000, MassDEP published the first draft of the APH method (http://www.mass.gov/dep/Image/aphsop01.doc). This same draft document is still in use today. “CAS had the honor of being one of the four original laboratories to contribute to the study, and we continue to work closely with MassDEP Bureau of Waste Site Cleanup Indoor Air Workgroup and the ASTM Vapor Intrusion Task Group,” stated Alyson Fortune, CAS’ Air Quality Scientist.

CAS is a certified, full service chemical and biological analytical laboratory that has successfully served clients in all 50 states and around the globe. The CAS network is comprised of eight laboratories in Arizona, California, Florida, New York, Texas and Washington. “Specifically, CAS Air Quality Laboratory, which has over 2000 canisters in our inventory and nearly 20 years experience, specializes in the analysis of volatile and semi-volatile organic compounds, sulfur compounds and other hazardous substances in a wide variety of air and vapor matrices,” said Fortune.

For more information about the MassDEP APH method, please contact the Simi Valley Laboratory at +1 805 526 7161.

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6 Responses to “Test Available For Petroleum Hydrocarbon Contamination In Air”

  1. Sam Djalali Says:

    Tenant of industrial condo is complaining about fumes from neighboring condo , that is an auto repair shop. Is there a way to test for this?

  2. Columbia Analytical Says:

    Hello Sam,

    The MassDEP APH method could be used to evaluate whether there are indoor impacts that are from gasoline/diesel. You may also wish to conduct a thorough inventory of products used in both the impacted condo and the auto repair shop before sampling–this will help you sort through any potential confounding indoor air sampling results. Also, you may discover a particular non-petroleum product/solvent/etc. that is used by the auto repair shop that may be the odor culprit, and may alter your sampling approach. Feel free to call us if you’d like to discuss further.

  3. Debi Anding Says:

    I have a new American Eagle Coach. We have had problems since we got the coach with what I call diesel fumes in the coach. The longer the engine runs to stronger it get. I had a local air quality testing company run some test. Some of the test results came back with Hydrocarbons, just below the OSHA threshold level for a 8 hour work day. The thing is we are in the coach for longer periods that 8 hrs. We travel some times for 10 hours and then we have to sleep in it and then drive again the next day for another 8 to 10 hours. I also have a daughter that sometimes travels with us that has medical issuse and a 8 yr old grandson that has astma. I need to have a way to do some more type of air quality testing. Is there anything else I can to to test for these Hydrocarbons. Fleetwood want’s to know what kind of hydrocarbons.

  4. Columbia Analytical Says:

    Hi Debi,

    Our laboratory can assist with analysis of samples for hydrocarbons in your coach (whether it is using this Massachusetts Air-Phase Petroleum Hydrocarbons method, or other methods), but we do not offer any health guidance or interpretation of the analytical results. I would still suggest that you contact a local industrial hygienist or other qualified person to assist you with the interpretation of the sample results, especially where you are concerned with potential health effects related to your daughter. You can search for a local Certified Industrial Hygienist in your area at the AIHA website: http://www.aiha.org. When you contact the company, make sure you let them know that this is not strictly an OSHA compliance issue, but you are worried about health effects, etc. At that time, you and your hired consultant can contact our laboratory to perform the analyses.

  5. Richard Says:

    I have an oil tank and furnace in my basement and sometimes there is an odor permeating through out it. I have lived here for 2 years and has had the furnace and the tank checked for oil leaks which was found to be a negative. However, the odor persists. A friend of mine stated that we need a hydrocarbon leakage monitor. I live in westchester county new york. Who do I call?

  6. admin Says:

    Hello Richard,

    A company called SRI sells hydrocarbon leak detectors. Here’s their weblink: http://www.srigc.com/2005catalog/cat88.htm.

    Thank you,

    ALS Environmental

    Formerly Columbia Analytical Services, Inc.

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