OHA Drinking Water Services
OHA Drinking Water Services
Contact Report Details

PWS ID: OR41 00657
PWS Name: PORTLAND WATER BUREAU
 
Who Was Contacted and Phone: Pat Easley and others
Contact Date: 01/30/2008
Contacted By: SALIS, KARI (DWP)
Contact Method/Location: Office
 
Assistance Type: OTHER REGULATORY - EMERGENCY RESPONSE/OERS
Reasons: IOCs
None
 
Details: SUMMARY: CR#1: Mercury spill in Well #14 DETAILS: Meeting with: Ken Thiessen, DEQ-- Ray Hoy, DEQ-- Pat Easley, PWB-- Tom Leavitt, PWB-- John O’Donovan, BESPWB has submersible pumps with mercury seals in 11 of their wells (the Byron-Jackson design). They would like to replace them all with double-mechanical seals, but the money they had budgeted for that got used for other pump repairs.In August, they had a valve stuck closed, and the well was pumping against itself for a length of time, and the motor burned out. They did not have the money to fix it right away. On December 26, 2007, they pulled out the pump and saw blisters on the motor, indicating extremely hot temperatures. Also, the mercury seal was broken, so they know some mercury and possibly motor oil leaked into the well. As they were deconstructing the pump, more mercury was leaked. Some was caught in a tarp, but some leached into the nearby soil and onto the concrete vault box. The contaminated soil was removed. A mass balance to determine how much mercury was recovered on the surface is not possible because of the amount of other debris picked up in the cleanup, so we do not know exactly how much elemental mercury spilled into the well. There is about a pint, or 12 lbs of mercury in the seal. Portland and DEQ treated this appropriately as hazardous spill. Continued in Contact report #2… ACTION NEEDED: continued on CR#2


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