This week the NH Department of Environmental Services began voluntary water testing at various locations in town outside of the service area of the Sewer and Water District. The state has already contacted individual landowners about the testing and has provided the following information:
There are no new releases of gasoline in this area that we’re aware of. Rather, we’re tasked with sampling private wells all over the state of New Hampshire. Since August of 2014, we have collected more than 10,000 samples from 6,000 wells within 150 different communities (Attachment 3). We attempt to focus our work in those areas where gasoline releases have occurred in the past. Sampling has already occurred to some extent in most of these areas. However, we’re able to sample much more aggressively and reach out to residents considerable distances away. The goal is to make sure that everyone in the area who would like to be sampled for VOCs has the opportunity to be sampled. Again, this is a voluntary sampling program and it is at no cost to residents.
Our funding source restricts us to only paying for the MtBE related VOC analysis. However, we consider our work an opportunity to educate the property owner about water quality in general. Therefore, we offer to collect and deliver any other samples to the lab that the property owner would like to have analyzed, provided they are willing to pay for the analysis. Most property owners (about 40%) take us up on this offer so they can be sure their water is not impacted by naturally occurring contaminants like Arsenic.