There are numerous technical method criteria against which all tests are compared. Generally, flags are used when one or more of these criteria are outside their normal bounds. In some cases, this means the results should be considered as estimated, however, a particular circumstance is best discussed with your laboratory representative if you have concerns.
Our standard TAT is 5 business days for most parameters, although asbestos air monitoring samples are typically read within 48 hours. Quicker turnaround times are often available and should be worked out with the laboratory in advance.
Holding times vary considerably, as do containers and preservation. Please use for reference to get the correct holding time for your parameter and matrix. For asbestos samples, holding times are not a concern.
Once sample analysis is complete, environmental samples are held for 30 days, at which point they are disposed of in an appropriate waste stream. Asbestos samples are held for 90 days following analysis.
We often have remaining sample in the event additional testing is required. We would need to discuss any additional testing on environmental samples to make sure containers, preservations, and holding times were suitable for any additional parameters.
Our recommendation for good chilling practice is to use real ice in lieu of ice packs in a cooler. Samples should be wrapped for safe transport in a way that the containers are not insulated completely from the ice.
New York State Department of Health has determined that method 5035 Volatile sample collection for soils is the only fully compliant protocol. This requires special containers and preservation/holding times. The conventional “soil in a jar” does not comply with 5035 requirements. The NYSDEC continues to accept lab data and QAPPS without 5035 compliance.
Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all answer to these questions. There are multiple regulatory frameworks for data evaluation, as well as individual private disposal sites that have set different criteria for waste handling and acceptance.
Here at Paradigm, we believe that you can’t get good data out of bad samples. It is our pleasure to share our expertise on sampling procedures to ensure that our clients get what they need.
EPA Method 5035A Sampling Summary (VOCs in Soil/Solid Matrix)
5035A is a complex sampling & preparatory procedure. There are several other variations not noted here. Please call your Paradigm Customer Service representative to discuss your particular situation if you have questions at (585) 647-2530. For quality control reasons, any unused kits can not be returned for credit. Kits will be charged at the time of container pick up.
For each sampling location, fill the coring tool with the sample and push one core into each 40ml VOA vial (for a total of four per sample location). Clean and close each vial securely with a Teflon-lined cap.
(NOTE: if an MS/MSD is needed, use one additional kit for that location).
All VOA vials have been coded, pre-labeled and PRE-WEIGHED. DO NOT ADD A LABEL or any tape, or we will not be able to determine the sample weight.
Dispose of the coring tool. Do not re-use for any other locations.
Bring the samples on ice to the lab ASAP, but NOT TO EXCEED 48 Hours from time of sampling, otherwise holding times will be violated. The lab will freeze the samples upon log-in, and has up to a total of 14 days from sampling to analysis.
Some clients may wish to use 5-gram ENCORE samplers that they have purchased directly. We still need to receive them as soon as possible after sampling (maximum of 48 hours) and must transfer them to a 5035 container set upon arrival. Three Encores and a 4-ounce wide mouth (or full VOA vial) must be delivered per location. (Five Encores are required if MS/MSD is needed).
If samples are received in a 4 ounce (or another non-5035 vial container), we will accept them, noted as non-compliant for container type. The sample will have a holding time of 14 days from sampling. As per DOH and DEC guidance memos, ALL results (including non-detects) below 200ug/kg will be noted on our report as potentially exhibiting low bias. All laboratories are bound by these same reporting rules.