Thousands of plastic disks from sewer plant pose no threatMarch 9, 2011 No Comments
RYE – Heavy rains on Sunday are said to have contributed to a release into the Long Island Sound of thousands of small quarter-sized white plastic disks from the Westchester County Wastewater Treatment Plant in Mamaroneck.
The disks have washed up on shore from Rye to new Rochelle. The county’s Department of Environmental Facilities is hiring a contractor to retrieve as many of them as possible. The disks, used at the Mamaroneck facility to help clean wastewater, are made of HDPE (high density polyethylene). HDPE is a non-toxic plastic that is used in every-day storage of food items. it is the same plastic commonly used for making milk containers.
County Environmental Facilities Commissioner Thomas Lauro said the plant is under construction, with two of the six aeration tanks being upgraded for advanced wastewater treatment.
The disks escaped from one of the tanks during startup of the process. They are used in the process of removing nitrogen from the wastewater to prevent hypoxia (inadequate oxygen) in the Sound.
Dr. Cheryl Archbald, acting commissioner of health, said that the disks pose no health risks to the public. Residents who find the disks on their property can throw them in the garbage. as with any debris, it is recommended that people use gloves or wash their hands after handling the disks.
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