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Rhode Island Residents Reminded About Woonasquatucket River "Do's and Don'ts"

Release Date: 05/19/2006
Contact Information: Contact Info: David Deegan, (617) 918-1017

Release Date 05/19/2006
Boston, Mass. - (May 19, 2006) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reminds residents of North Providence, Johnston, and Providence, and the public to use the Woonasquatucket River responsibly. Contaminated water and sediment may pose a health risk, unless the public follows the following Do's & Don'ts for the Woonasquatucket River.

      - Don’t eat fish, turtles, eels, other wildlife or plants from the Woonasquatucket River;
      - Don’t wade in the shallow water or swim in the river;
      - Don’t dig into the river banks; and,
      - Do obey the warning signs posted along the river.

With spring in the air, the Woonasquatucket River is an appealing spot for children. While EPA continues to make progress in cleaning up contaminated areas, teachers and parents should remain vigilant to ensure that children are protected from contaminants remaining in the water or sediments.

Walking, running, or bike riding along the river, and paddling a canoe or kayak on the river are ways to safely enjoy the river. However, people should wash thoroughly after any contact with the river water or sediment.

EPA has begun to evaluate potential cleanup alternatives for addressing contamination in Allendale and Lyman Mill Ponds and will continue this evaluation process through 2006. Last winter, EPA released a revised human health risk assessment report and preliminary remediation goals for the Centredale Manor Restoration Project. The respective studies looked at the potential risks to members of the public who come into contact with sediment, soils, or surface water, or consume fish from the Woonasquatucket River; and begin to outline preliminary ideas for cleanup of the contamination in the river between Route 44 and Lyman Mill Dam. The reports can be reviewed at the North Providence and Johnston public libraries.

For more information about the “do’s and don’t’s” about the river, contact: EPA at 617-918-1010 or the Woonasquatucket River Watershed Council at 401-861-9046.

Background information on the Woonasquatucket River can be obtained at: