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Source: News 12 Long Island

DEC continues testing after banned chemical found in Manorville water

Posted: January 27, 2017
Originally Published: January 24, 2017

MANORVILLE - More water testing was done Tuesday in Manorville after contamination was found in the groundwater.

As News 12 has reported, higher than acceptable levels of a now banned gasoline additive called MTBE were discovered in three private wells on Oakwood Drive. According to the Department of Environmental Conservation, levels in one home were 25 times the state limit.

The DEC says three homes have so far been equipped with carbon filtration systems. Crews spent the day digging a well on Oakwood Drive and taking water samples at various depths to try and determine how far the contamination goes and where it's coming from.

"They're collecting samples every 10 feet down to 100 feet," says Karen Gomes, a water quality engineer. "This data, along with other wells that we will be putting in, will have a better idea of the extent of the contamination."

Environmental activist Adrienne Esposito says MTBE contamination on Long Island isn't uncommon. The gasoline additive was required by the federal government for more than 20 years before being banned. Esposito says it dissolves quickly and travels fast.

"A small amount can contaminate a large area of drinking water," says Esposito.

The DEC says it's too soon to say whether the MTBE found in the Manorville community was dumped, spilled or leaked.