LEBANON, Ore. -- The Department of Environmental Quality said Lebanon residents who aren't connected to city water, could be drinking contaminated water.
Don Hanson, the Western Region Environmental Cleanup and Emergency Response Manger at the DEQ, said this only impacts people who use well-water. He said the city water is perfectly fine.
He tells me this is something they've been working on since the mid-nineties. A portion of the groundwater in downtown Lebanon, about 400 acres, is contaminated with some solvent chemicals (some of that is from leaks from old dry cleaning facilities).
The DEQ sent out about 1,900 letters to people living within a 900 acre stretch of that area, saying if they use well-water, the DEQ would like to come test it.
"We just want to try to help them out by seeing if they'll let us sample their well, test it for the chemicals and if they have high levels, then we can offer to help pay to get them connected to city water," said Hanson.
He said it can be unhealthy for people to use that contaminated water long term. He said most people in Lebanon are using city water, so they're fine.
Right now, they're seeking public comment on a long term plan to fix it.
The DEQ is holding an informational meeting about proposed remedies for groundwater contamination on Thursday at 6:00 p.m. in the Lebanon Public Library.