Well test results in May 2016 showed a number of private drinking water wells in the area of Bedford within a 1.5-mile radius of the Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics plant in Merrimack had concentrations greater than 70 parts per trillion (ppt) of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA). Bottled water delivery was then expanded to include those properties while NHDES worked with Saint-Gobain to investigate and determine the appropriate long-term remedy for addressing the elevated levels of PFASs in groundwater.

(This is a timeline of the project from November 2016 to August 2017. For updates on the project past August 2017, please visit the home page or look for the “Bedford” category in the drop-down menu to the right.)

August 15, 2017 – Saint-Gobain provided an update on its efforts: Three design estimates to provide public water to 61 properties in Bedford, which were prepared by Pennichuck Corp. and delivered to Saint-Gobain on August 8, were reviewed with the town and NHDES.

July 21, 2017 – Inspections have been completed on 47 of the 61 homes. There has been a delay on developing the topography for the area. The time estimate for completion of the design is now 30 to 60 days, i.e. by the end of August. NHDES has requested that Saint-Gobain connect 23 properties on South River Road with private wells to MWW. Saint-Gobain’s contractor C.T. Male Associates will be contacting property owners to evaluate connection costs.

May 25, 2017 – Pennichuck Corp. is working on a design of a water line extension for 61 properties identified as being impacted by PFOA. The design work includes alternative connections to both Merrimack Village District Water and Manchester Water Works (MWW). The design effort is expected to take 12 weeks from May 9, 2017. Six properties on South River Road with private wells have PFOA tests above 70 ppt. The MWW public water lines run in front of these properties. Saint-Gobain is working on having these properties connected to MWW.

April 2017 – Saint-Gobain agrees to fund design efforts for a potential extension of public water service into Bedford. Pennichuck Corp. will complete the design work, which will include 61 properties. Saint-Gobain has made this commitment while NHDES continues to investigate other potentially responsible parties, who may also bear financial responsibilities.

December 16, 2016 – Town of Bedford has scheduled a meeting with NHDES, Saint-Gobain, C.T. Male, and Town representatives for December 21, 2016. The intent of the meeting is to discuss the water system extension options, costs, schedule and Town requirements.

November 1, 2016 – NHDES and the Town of Bedford held a public meeting to provide updated information on the installation of point of use treatment systems (POUs) and the extension of public water. A link to the Town of Bedford video of the meeting is available here.