LOCKPORT – Mayor Anne E. McCaffrey said test results are expected Wednesday from the Niagara County Health Department on whether the water is safe to drink on several blocks of the western part of the city, following an accident Monday in which grass seed mixed with pulped paper was washed into the water main from a contractor’s tank truck. The mayor confirmed there was no fertilizer in the contractor’s tank, only seed.
A worker for Northeast Paving of Lancaster, a subcontractor on a parking lot expansion project at North Park Junior High School and nearby Anna Merritt Elementary School, apparently did not use a backflow preventer while loading his hydroseeding tank with water Monday morning. Deborah A. Coder, the Lockport City School District’s assistant superintendent for finance and management, said most of the seeding was done Friday, but a spot was missed, and the worker tried to do it without seeking another permit from the city to use water from the fire hydrant.
Timothy Szczepanski, vice president of Northeast Paving, confirmed no backflow preventer was used but said the unit was not pressurized and shouldn’t have been strong enough to blow seed back into the water main.
“Well, if he had the backflow preventer on it, it wouldn’t have,” Coder responded.