City water safe to drink,
but another well is contaminated

This article submitted by Linda Stelling on 2/17/98.

Paynesvilleís public works committee met with the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) and the Department of Health on Wednesday afternoon to learn more about the high levels of benzene found in well number three. The well is located near the city shop on Railroad Street.

The meeting Wednesday afternoon was to discuss various options and possible solutions available to the city.

In November 1997, the contaminant benzene was found in well number four behind city hall. In January, the same contaminant appeared in well number three. Benzene is a component of gasoline.

In a two-month span between testing, the parts per billion count went from 6.2 to 17 at well number three. Following treatment at the cityís water plant, the concentration dropped to 3.6 which is an acceptable level for the Department of Health. Anything over five is not acceptable.

The city council was told not to panic. The water is safe to drink and not a threat to anyone. Test results from the monitoring wells should be known by April 1.

Full story on well contamination

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