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February 13, 2013

Cleanup underway at Beede Superfund site

Cleanup finally begins at Beede Superfund site

PLAISTOW — Nearly a decade after it was declared a Superfund site, real progress is finally being made at the former Beede Waste Oil property on Kelley Road.

Thousands of gallons of oil were dumped at the 40-acre site for decades, dating back to 1920.

The site was closed in 1994 and declared a Superfund site in 1996. But progress to clean up the contamination and provide 22 households with clean water has been agonizingly slow.

The Beede Group, the companies deemed responsible for the pollution, is footing the cleanup bill. The group includes Exxon, Sears, Cumberland Farms and many more companies. The federal Environmental Protection Agency is overseeing the work.

Residents will soon be able to turn on their faucets and get clean water, something they haven’t had for years. But, by the end of next week, all 22 households should have clean tap water.

Water, which will be supplied by Pennichuck Water Works, will be piped in from a well on Culver Street to homes whose wells were contaminated on Culver Street, Main Street, Kelly Road, Shady Lane and part of Walton Road.

“This is a milestone for the project,” said Greg Howard, spokesman for the Beede Group. “Finally, these people will be getting clean water for their taps.”

Town Manager Sean Fitzgerald agreed.

“This public water option is a huge improvement in terms of how we’re managing this important responsibility,” he said

Jean Banaski lives at 16 Shady Lane. Although her home is not one of those affected, she is happy to see her neighbors getting clean water.

“I know I would want it done at my house,” Banaski said. “I’m glad they’re finally cleaning it.”

But that’s just one step in an estimated $45 million cleanup plan. The next step in the cleanup is completing a groundwater treatment system.

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