What is Due Care and what are Your Obligations?

Due care describes the actions a person must undertake and are necessary to protect people from exposure to contamination present in soil, groundwater, and subsurface vapors; allow for the safe use of contaminated property; and provide notifications to affected parties, such as utilities and easement holders, or to neighboring properties upon the migration of contamination.

In general, the obligations are comprised of actions to:

  • Immediately prevent fire and explosive conditions.
  • Prevent anyone using the property from unacceptable exposures to the existing contamination.
  • Prevent anyone from taking actions that cause exacerbation of the existing contamination, such as migration from your property.
  • Take reasonable precautions against the foreseeable acts of third parties, such as contractors, utility workers, etc.
  • Cooperate with and provide access to the person responsible for cleaning up the existing contamination and don't interfere with their actions.
  • Be aware of and comply with any land or resource use restrictions placed on the property due to the existing contamination. An example might be to prevent the installation of a drinking water well into contaminated groundwater.

The brochure "What Do I Need to Know if I Own or Operate Contaminated Property" and the DEQ-RRD Due Care Guide provide a general discussion of the purpose and obligations. The obligations can be found in Part 213, Section 21304c, Part 201, Section 20107a and Part 10 of the Part 201 Administrative Rules. Your obligations may include the need complete and submit Notice of Migration (instructions) and the Notice of Abandoned Containers.