Contaminants found at six more Fairfield sites

The Town Hall Soccer Fields, which will be remediated following the detection of PAHs.

The Town Hall Soccer Fields, which will be remediated following the detection of PAHs.

Rachel Scharf / Hearst Connecticut Media

FAIRFIELD — Six out of the 10 town fields tested last week showed low levels of contaminated soil.

The town announced results from Aug. 22-23 tests Friday night, saying they will remediate contaminated sites despite notice from experts that the levels detected are not dangerous.

Some asbestos was discovered at Burroughs Park Soccer Field, and small amounts of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) were found at the Jennings Beach playground area grass and the Town Hall Soccer Fields.

Low levels of arsenic were detected at Sullivan Football Fields, and some extractable total petroleum hydrocarbons (ETPHs) were discovered at South Pine Creek Soccer Fields.

The rear exterior area behind the recreation building and tennis court at the Old Dam Road Tennis Facility showed both PAHs and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs).

Licensed environmental professional Tighe & Bond, in consultation with the state Department of Health, advised that the levels of exceedance for all these materials were low enough that “use of the fields and areas by children and adults can continue without risk of health effects.”

However, the town said that it will keep these areas cordoned off for further evaluation and remediation “out of an abundance of caution.”

The town will work with Tighe & Bond and the Department of Health to design remediation action plans for each site.

No contaminants above the residential standards were found at Dougiello Softball Field, Holland Hill Soccer Field, Oldfield Soccer Field or the Tunxis Hill Soccer Fields. The town advised that these sites are safe to use, and the Board of Education and Parks and Recreation Department will decide when the fields will be reopened.

This is the latest result to come back in the town’s ongoing investigation into potential contamination in public parks and fields. Tests began after the town discovered that inadequate fill from the mismanaged Julian pile had been used for Public Works projects between 2013 and 2016.

The previous round of testing found levels of arsenic and PAHs just above the residential standards at Jennings, Mill Hill and Riverfield. Remediation is being planned at these sites, along with the Gould Manor Park sidewalk area, where arsenic, lead and asbestos were detected.

These tests cleared the other school sites on the town’s initial list: Burr, Dwight, McKinley, North Stratfield and Fairfield Woods. The district reopened these fields last week.

Taking an extra measure of caution, the school district also closed for testing all other school fields and playscapes last week. Superintendent Mike Cummings said they hope to have these results back next week.