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EPA to Connect Homes in Smithtown to Municipal Water

Release Date: 10/26/2004
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(#04165) NEW YORK, N.Y. -- Private wells that are at risk of contamination from the Smithtown Ground Water Contamination Superfund site will be connected to municipal water, according to a plan announced today by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Some wells that draw from the area's ground water are contaminated with tetrachloroethylene (PCE) from the site, while others are at risk of future contamination. The homes with wells that are known to be contaminated have already been connected to municipal water or the residents have been given individual treatment systems.

"We first took steps to protect the health of people facing immediate risks from contaminated wells, and now are turning our attention to wells that have the potential to become contaminated," said EPA Regional Administrator Jane M. Kenny. "This plan will provide a safe source of drinking water for residents with threatened wells."

EPA will perform long term monitoring to ensure that contamination levels decrease over time. No new wells will be allowed in the vicinity of the contaminated ground water, and existing private wells will be abandoned.

The site was listed on the National Priorities List of the nation's most hazardous waste sites in January 1999. EPA conducted an investigation of the nature, extent and source of contamination in the ground water. The Agency, through one of its contractors, connected 30 residences to municipal water and installed nine water treatment systems in homes that could not access the municipal supply. EPA has investigated residential areas in the villages of Head of the Harbor and Nissequogue and along Lake Avenue and North Country Road in the hamlet of St. James, but has not found the original source of the contamination.