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Trucks, Traffic and Trash: Sutton Brook Cleanup To Begin In Earnest

Jun 04, 2014 10:02AM ● By Bill Gilman

Work has begun on efforts to cleanup and cap the Sutton Brook Superfund Site, also known as Rocco's Dump.

Federal and local officials are alerting residents of South Tewksbury that there will be a significant increase in truck traffic later this month, associated with the $30 million cleanup of the Sutton Brook Superfund site.
The 50-acre parcel, also  known as Rocco's Dump, is located off South Street, near the Wilmington line.
For the past two months, contractors have been doing prep work on the site. This week, according to an EPA press release, the site is being connected to the town's sewer line.
At the June 3 Board of Selectmen's meeting, Town Manager Richard Montuori announced that in a few weeks, trucks would begin hauling in fill and other materials needed for the cleanup.
According to EPA Community Involvement Coordinator Sarah White, work on the site, including truck deliveries, Monday through Friday, from 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Work will also be going on Saturdays through the fall and likely on the last three Sundays in July. No truck deliveries will take place on Sunday, however.
"This is clearly going to be a high visibility project," said Todd Johnson, chairman of the Board of Selectmen. "People should be aware that it's about to commence."
Town officials met with contractors and EPA representatives last month to go over plans for safety and traffic mitigation. Among the steps being taken to limit impact on the neighborhood, said White, is the installation of a "wheel wash station," which will hose down the wheels of the trucks as they leave the site to limit dirt and dust being tracked through the neighborhood. In addition, said White, a street sweeper has been contracted to sweep South Street "as needed" during the project.
In the coming days, Tewksbury DPW staff will taking a close look at the route being used by the trucks from the highway to the cleanup site. They will be identifying vegetation that needs to be cut back for visibility and safety and, according to Montouri, they will be videotaping the entire route, with special attention being paid to town infrastructure. This will allow the town to be able to easily document any damage done by the trucks to municipal property.
During the period of heavy truck activity, there will be detail police officers helping with traffic issues.
According to the EPA press release, the area in the cleanup site to be capped is divided into two sections. Trucks will deliver fill for the "South Lobe" throughout 2014 and will deliver fill for the "North Lobe" through 2016. The project itself is not expected to be completed until at least 2016.
Cleanup activities will also include fencing to prevent runoff of potentially hazardous sediment and installation of a groundwater extraction system.
Efforts to cleanup the Sutton Brook/Rocco's site began in 1999, when EPA officials began testing groundwater and soil for contaminants, deposited as the result of illegal dumping over many years on the site.
According to the EPA Sutton Brook Web Site, contaminants found included "volatile organic compounds (VOCs), semi-volatile organic compounds (SVOCs), pesticides, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and inorganic elements in on-site and off-site ground water, surface water, sediment, soil, and VOCs and SVOCs in air samples."

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