The Fairfield Health Department today announced the results of soil sampling conducted on August 20-21 at eight public school sites in the town.
According to the findings of laboratory analysis carried out by Tighe & Bond, a Licensed Environmental Professional (LEP) retained by the Town, areas tested at five schools (Burr, Dwight, McKinley, North Stratfield and Fairfield Woods) showed no exceedances above the Residential Direct Exposure Criteria (RES DEC), and consequently are safe to use. The Board of Education is responsible for any decision on when these fields will be reopened.
Areas at three schools (Jennings, Mill Hill and Riverfield) showed levels above the Residential Direct Exposure Criteria for Arsenic in one instance and Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) in two others. The Connecticut Department of Public Health was consulted regarding these results and advised that given the levels found and the typical use of these areas, such use would not cause any health effects. Nevertheless, because levels were detected in exceedance of the residential criteria, the Town will proceed with remediation.
The Town will now work with Tighe & Bond in consultation with the Connecticut Department of Public Health in designing remediation action plans for the affected fields at those three schools. During this period, access at those specific areas will continue to be restricted.
Specifically for those three schools where materials were found to be in exceedance of RES DEC:
- Jennings Elementary School – Arsenic exceeded the RES DEC
- Mill Hill Elementary School - Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) exceeded the RES DEC
- Riverfield School – PAHs exceeded the RES DEC
Also of importance to note, neither PCBs or asbestos (either in the soil or in any building material) were detected at any of the locations tested.
“We are relieved that the fields and other areas tested at the five schools are safe, and we will be working with the Board of Education to get them reopened as soon as possible,” said First Selectman Mike Tetreau. “Where we did see evidence of contaminated soil at the other school sites, the levels are relatively low and confined to a limited area, which should enable us to complete the remediation as quickly as possible. Our Health Department continues to move at a rapid pace to complete the analysis of test results at the remaining sites on our priority list, and we look forward to sharing that information as soon as the analysis is completed.”
Details of the testing and remediation plans will be updated on the Town’s special webpage: fairfieldct.org/filluseissues.
Residents with questions about these reports may contact the Fairfield Department of Health at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Town of Fairfield initiated this testing process upon learning that possibly-contaminated material was improperly disposed of at the Town’s aggregate fill pile, and then used on town properties as fill or topsoil during the period 2013-2016, when Julian Development was managing the aggregate site, located at the DPW facility on Richard White Way. The Town is seeking damages from Julian Development for the costs the Town has incurred because Julian Development allowed the dumping of hazardous material at the fill pile, in violation of its contract with the Town.