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Crews connect water lines to west Wichita homes

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

WICHITA, Kan.-- A dozen homes will get connected to the City of Wichita water supply after groundwater contamination was found in West Wichita.

"There are a few pockets in town, this one being probably one of the larger areas, where the water mains weren't laid because decisions when that development went in years and years ago," said Ben Nelson, strategic services manager for the city's public works and utilities department.

The latest map shows homes in the area of concern, mainly south of Central and Tyler Road.

There are 12 properties impacted that are close enough to existing water mains and can be connected immediately. It then requires a private plumber to install service lines into the homes. The costs for the connections will be paid for by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment Dry Cleaning Program.

About 50 homes have come back with levels that are above the five parts per billion of a toxic dry cleaning chemical called tetrachloroethylene or PCE.

KAKE News was the first to report on March 31 of the groundwater contamination. Since then, KDHE has been working to get an alternate water supply to those affected by the contamination plume.

"The district staff and the Dry Cleaning Program staff have all been working very hard to address resident concerns. We continue to speak with them and take all their questions and make sure that they've got healthy, bottled water to drink," said Ashton Rucker KDHE Public Information Officer.

If you live in or near the area of concern and have questions, call KDHE at (785) 296-1914.


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