Springfield—After receiving reports from Sauk Village residents stating concerns about the integrity of the air stripping units currently treating Sauk Village drinking water, the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency immediately dispatched an inspector to investigate.
The inspector determined that there was no threat to the water supply and no untreated water entered the distribution system.
The inspector learned that last night a fuel line or fuel filter on the diesel generator powering the air strippers became clogged, making them inoperable. However, the well pumps continued to supply water to the tank, causing it to subsequently overflow.
Reportedly, the water flowing to the sewer was observed by a resident and was reported to the city which affected repair. A backup generator was put into service while maintenance was conducted on the primary generator. During the repair period (approximately 3 hours), the water system used stored water; no untreated water was sent to the water supply distribution system.
In mid-August, the Illinois EPA installed air stripping equipment at the Sauk Village drinking water plant to remove vinyl chloride, which is known to have adverse health effects with long-term use. Illinois EPA is continuing sample and analyze Sauk Village’s public water supply on a regular basis.
Vinyl chloride is a man-made chemical that is found in groundwater from break-down products of solvent-type chemicals. When detected it can indicated spills or releases that occurred 25 years or more in the past. Illinois EPA is continuing to investigate the potential cause of the groundwater contamination in Sauk Village.