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Water testing continues in earnest in Jackson

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JACKSON -- The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and West Shore Pipe Line company is working to help those affected by a gas pipe line leak that occurred on July 17th in the town of Jackson. Hundreds attended a standing-room-only public hearing held Tuesday night, with a list of concerns. Officials are now trying to address those concerns, and quell residents' fears.

Water testing continues in earnest, after benzene was found in samples from 12 private wells located in the vicinity of the leak. Nine of those wells have benzene levels above federal safety standards.

The company is working with residents to install water filtration system to remove contaminants and has made bottled water available.

West Shore Pipe Line says in addition to these 12 private wells, an additional 75 private wells within a three-quarter mile radius of the site have also been tested. No benzene or other gasoline contaminants have been found in these wells.

The number of homes affected could continue to rise, as the plume of gas travels.

Hundreds of kids from Kettle Moraine Lutheran High School and other schools will begin gathering for sports practices and sporting events starting Monday, August 6th. Having safe drinking water will be a priority.

Concerns were brought up regarding water safety and the school, and by mid-afternoon Wednesday, the head of maintenance at the school said water testers had been out to the site.

The DNR says they are focusing on homes close to the source of contamination, and will be installing water filtration systems for all those homes. So far, 25 systems have been installed.

Meanwhile, those who have moved into several new subdivisions in the area are concerned that lots will stay empty and houses for sale sit idle.

The Washington County Health Department says the West Shore Pipe Line company is developing a website for updates, as residents say a big problem has been the lack of information provided.

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