On August 2, 2011, The Winnebago County Health Department and the IDPH held an informational meeting for residents in this area to gather information on the contamination and to sign up for additional testing. On August 4, 2011, 20 home sites were selected for additional testing from feedback from the meeting questionnaires completed by residents.
On August 19, 2011 the IDPH sent the sample results to the 20 residents. Based on these results, the scope of the area has been limited to private wells in the area of Johnston Avenue to the West; Alliance Avenue to the East; Auburn Street to the South: and Parkside Ave to the North. From the second round of results, VOC’s were detected from four homes and two of those are above the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) maximum contaminant level. The home with the highest level of VOCs was resampled and the concentration found was 70% lower, indicating a possible decline in the VOCs in the area groundwater.
“At this point in time, we do not know the source of the contamination, but the Winnebago County Health Department and IDPH will continue to collect samples. The Departments recommend that homeowners notify the Winnebago County Public Health Department if there are any changes in their water as in taste, smell or color. It is also a recommended that homeowner’s install an activated carbon filter, or hook up to public water. The Department’s are working in partnership to evaluate the scope of the problem and to inform residents of the health risks.
To this end, the Winnebago County Health Department is holding this presentation at the Northwest Community Center on the current groundwater findings and steps that residents can take to protect themselves from drinking contaminated water.
For further information, please contact Todd Marshall, Winnebago County Health Department Pollution Control Supervisor at (815) 720-4118.