Six Water Wells Contaminated Near Andover

By: Lily Wu - Email
By: Lily Wu - Email

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Thursday, January 26, 2012

Eric Hauck joined dozens of neighbors, who are being affected by the water contamination problem east of Andover.

"For the moment, we're really glad to have the clean water. Our concern now is for the long term because even the best carbon filters, with the activated carbon, they only last so long," said Hauck.

A carbon filtration system was installed at Hauck's home. Seven homes were provided the systems and one home is awaiting installation. Hauck's water well was one of six that tested positive for contamination that included abnormal levels of benzene.

"It's nice to know that they're able to filter out a lot of that stuff. Obviously we wish that we didn't have to worry at all," said Hauck.

NuStar Energy operates a pipeline in Hauck's neighborhood. The pipeline had a leak back in 1992 when it was operated by Kaneb. NuStar officials said they have recently tested the line and have found no leaks.

"NuStar wants to act first on the safety of the public so we want to make sure that we do further analysis and work with the KDHE and their drinking water experts to make sure that the issue is taken care of properly," said Gary Koegeboehn, vice president of NuStar's central east region.

The exact source of contamination remains unknown. NuStar provided bottled water and installed carbon filtration systems on the homes of residents who requested it.

"They are being helpful and yet also, rightfully so, they're being cautious about claiming 100% fault," said Hauck.

KDHE has a "Community Right to Know Program" that provides information about potential chemical hazards in communities. The phone number is 785-296-1689.

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