KSN Investigates: Haysville groundwater contamination update

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HAYSVILLE, Kan. (KSNW) – Since 2017, the state has known the groundwater off 412 Grand Street in Haysville was contaminated with cleaning chemicals considered toxic.

Some in Haysville are asking when the cleanup begins.

“When are you going to start doing? I’m kind of done with the talking,” said Alissa Lott who grew up in Haysville. “This has been going on for a while. It’s time to start putting some actions behind your words.”

KSN Investigates first brought you the in-depth story back in November, and we told you about the chemicals in the groundwater along with contaminated soils.

RELATED LINK | KSN Investigates: Groundwater contamination

This week the Kansas Department of Health and Environment says it has a plan.

“KDHE anticipates excavating as much soil contamination as possible. Remediation funding has been allocated for the site,” said Kristi Pankratz, KDHE Communications. “Remedial design engineers will also evaluate the use of other options to clean up any remaining contamination after the excavation.”

KDHE has also been working on studying the site. That includes looking into possible vapor intrusion to see if toxic chemicals in the groundwater are seeping into the soil and air. KDHE found no evidence of toxic levels of vapor intrusion.

While KDHE also plans to work at reducing a groundwater plume of contamination, some residents say they have waited a long time for action.

“These contaminants leaked into the groundwater many, many years ago,” said Lott. “In my opinion I don’t think enough has been done. The water hasn’t been cleaned. The ground/soil hasn’t been cleaned.”

KDHE says it is still working on securing the site so it can have access to the contamination sites. Work is supposed to begin by the end of 2019.

Remediation could take up to ten years. KSN will keep checking with KDHE and keep you updated.

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