Primary proof of environmental damage requires evidence, and soil, soil vapor, air, and water samples are the main forms of evidence presented to regulatory agencies and discussed in courtrooms. In ideal conditions, the samples are collected by a licensed professional, such as an experienced professional geologist or professional engineer or by staff under their direction, and the samples are analyzed by an independent third‐party certified laboratory.
The process of assessing spills and leaks in soil, surface water, groundwater, air, and soil vapor relies on standard operating procedures (SOPs), specialized equipment, and detailed record keeping. When the spillage source is unknown, subsurface sampling tends to be an iterative process to define the vertical and lateral extent of a release. The information in this appendix was designed to be a general overview of sampling methods and documentation. Site‐specific challenges, local regulatory policies, or health exposure issues may require other procedures or different techniques than the general methods described below.
General Sampling Procedures
All information pertinent to field investigations is typically kept on forms that comprise the field documents in which all pertinent information about borehole samples and groundwater samples are recorded.
- Daily Field Form
- Workplan with Technical Objectives
- Site‐Specific Safety Plan
- Load List
- Transportation Log ...