NH DES has provided a response to the Town’s Fire Department Site Investigation early this spring. The Board and Town staff are working in coordination with our engineering consultant and DES to create a work plan that responds to the State’s requests of the Town in following-up on the contamination. This plan will include the development of a Remedial Action Plan (RAP), presumptive treatment options and a Ground Water Management application. As the Town develops this plan, it will communicate with affected property owners on next steps and timelines.
Update: June 1, 2020 No response from the State has been received as of this date, we plan to reach out to the state in the coming weeks to check on the status of their review.
The Town is continuing to work with the State of NH and its environmental engineering consultant Wilcox & Barton to finalize a Focused Site Investigation report begun last year. Preliminary data presented in October 2019, found the source of the contamination to be the Town’s Fire Department. Since that time, the town has worked with the State, Wilcox and private property owners to determine the extent of the contamination. This report is being written. As discussed in October, it appears the extent of the contamination emanates from the Fire station and down gradient to the Portsmouth Avenue properties and those on College Road.
The report is being finalized at a time when the actual water quality standards have been the subject to change, making the full impact and scope of the contamination, next steps, and future mitigation a “moving target”. The standards themselves have been impacted by legislative activity, rulemaking activity in the executive branch, and judicial rulings. We are following these development closely to ensure we are responding effectively and appropriately. It is clear, that discussions about mitigation will be ongoing and take some time to sort out. Meanwhile, impacted properties who want bottled water have been provided it by the Town and this practice will continue. Please stay tuned for updates.
Recently, Town staff consulted with NH DES in the status of the focused site investigation. The state provided guidance that included the need for additional ground water testing on the western edge of the Town Center. This work is being coordinated and will take place prior to the finalization of the Focused-Site Investigation.
On September 10, 2019, over 50 residents and property owners attended the Town’s PFAS in Town Center Informational night at the Municipal Center. Meeting video and Q & A summary will be posted shortly, meanwhile, the meeting’s presentation is posted on the Town’s PFAS Resource Page.
Click here to view the PowerPoint presentation.
Please see video of meeting at the bottom of this page.
The following is an update to Town of Stratham residents concerning the PFAS groundwater contamination notification process being carried out by NH DES. NH DES has shared initial results of testing of community well water systems in Town Center, which indicate contamination in additional wells in Town Center. These results follow the initial test result at 149-151 Portsmouth Avenue. As a result, DES is conducting further testing of nearby wells in the Town Center vicinity. DES has direct mailed residents in the immediate vicinity and is offering testing for PFAS chemicals as part of a free sampling program. Posted below is a letter that was received by residents and businesses in the affected areas around Town Center.
The Town of Stratham is working closely with DES to understand the testing results and update the community. In addition, the well serving the Town Fire Station is also impacted by PFAS levels over the drinking water standards. As a result, the Town is working to ensure potable water at the Fire Station, Historical Society, and another building served by the well. In addition, the Town is working close with well system owners impacted in Town Center in following up on the contamination issue.
More information will be provided here as it is available.
(603) 772-7391 ext. 181
Request for Proposals - Site Investigation
The Town of Stratham has been made aware of a groundwater contamination notification process recently initiated by NH DES. DES will be sending a notification to affected private well and public water systems in the area of Town Center. This web page has been established by the Town as a repository for information it receives relative to the process underway at NH DES to respond to the issue in this limited vicinity. Thanks for your patience as limited information is available at this early stage in the DES process.
Please see below for a sample DES Sample letter sent to affected properties. The letter contains contact information for DES and includes more information about the exceedance of the contaminant, Perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS) and Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA).
Government Resources regarding Poly- and Per-fluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS or PFCs)
From NH DHHS
Poly- and Per-fluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS or PFCs)
From NH DES
The State of New Hampshire has made a number of resources available through its website:
News Release: NHDES Submits Final Rulemaking Proposal for PFOA, PFOS, PFHxS and PFNA
NHDES and NHDHHS have compiled a list of frequently asked questions and answers associated with PFAS, drinking water, and potential health impacts that can be found here: https://www4.des.state.nh.us/nh-pfas-investigation/?page_id=92
Since new drinking water standards may encourage private well owners to test their wells for the newly regulated compounds, NHDES has compiled an updated well testing fact sheet that can be found here:https://www4.des.state.nh.us/nh-pfas-investigation/wp-content/uploads/20...
Should you wish to consider or install PFAS treatment in your home or business, NHDES has compiled a fact sheet on treatment technologies for PFAS that can be found here: https://www4.des.state.nh.us/nh-pfas-investigation/?page_id=171
In-Home Water Filtration Options for PFCs in Household Drinking Water
Update: March 2020. The Focused-Site investigation report has been completed and submitted to the State of New Hampshire. See link below for the report. The next step is to hear from the State of NH about the report and next steps.
Wilcox & Barton - Final Focused Site Investigation Report - March 2020
February 18, 2020 - Remedial Action Plan