Land near Bayonne sewer line to be remediated

The area is one of three distinct areas along Newark Bay

Remediation work is underway near a sewer line located on the west side of Bayonne. The project is part of Honeywell International Inc.’s program to remove toxic chromium residue left over from construction of the pipeline in the first part of the 20th century.

Honeywell is performing the work under the supervision of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) along a portion of the Bayonne Western Interceptor Sewer Pipeline.

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The project will repair an engineered cap over a section of the Bayonne Western Interceptor Sewer Pipeline, according to Honeywell. The cap helps prevent erosion and direct contact with the impacted soils below. Soil will not be excavated or exposed.

The existing cap consists of tubes filled with soil and seed that was designed to protect against erosion and promote vegetation growth. However, harsh waves, currents, and tide swings have caused some erosion preventing vegetation growth.

With NJDEP approval, the tubes, which are called Filtrexx GroSoxx, will be covered with stone-filled polymeric marine mattresses. Those are designed to withstand the harsh shoreline conditions.

The work area is along the Newark Bay shoreline. A temporary construction entrance will be at the end of 32nd Street for small equipment and workers.

There will be a few parking restrictions at the intersection of West 32nd Street and West Drive. Site security will include temporary fencing to segregate the work area, a security checkpoint, and daily inspections.

Drinking water, work schedule, traffic flow, noise control, and safety training

According to Honeywell, drinking water is not affected by the remediation. The public water supply to the surrounding area is provided by Veolia. The groundwater underneath the property is not used for public water. This project is designed to “protect the safety of the public, the workers, and the environment,” according to Honeywell.

Work is scheduled to begin the third week of November and be completed by the beginning of December. Hours of operation run from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Extended work hours may be required for barge activities due to tide cycles and or weather.

Traffic flow, and route to and from the site, will be approved by the Police Department. According to Honeywell, the construction entrance will be at the end of West 32nd Street. Construction traffic will be limited to normal business hours.

Land-based construction activities will only be performed during permitted daytime work hours. According to Honeywell, health and safety personnel will monitor noise levels and adhere to the City Noise Ordinance.

Construction workers will receive training in compliance with Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requirements. Barge workers will follow additional maritime safety procedures and navigation regulations. Workers also will participate in daily safety meetings.

In addition to NJDEP supervision, the project is done in cooperation with the City of Bayonne, Hudson County, and Veolia. Construction materials will be delivered via barge.

Anyone with questions can contact Department of Public Works Director Tom Cotter at 201-341-6393; Honeywell representative Victoria Streitfeld at 609-218-9460; or the NJDEP Office of Community Relations at 800-253-5647 or 609-984-3081.

“Honeywell will restore the site in a way that protects public health and the environment,” Honeywell said in a statement. “We are committed to doing so with the least disruption to the local community.”

Another map of the remediation area in Bayonne, courtesy of Honeywell.

City council authorizes agreement for environmental work

At its November meeting, the City Council approved a resolution authorizing a Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) and Memorandum of Agreement with Honeywell. This was in connection with the remediation of contaminated soil and groundwater at various NJDEP sites, including this one, pursuant to a Consent Judgement with the NJDEP in 2011.

“It’s on the west side,” Business Administrator Donna Russo said. “There are three separate areas.”

According to Russo, the areas include near the terminus of 21st Street, and an area in Thomas DiDomenico-16th Street Park.

“These are areas that Honeywell is taking responsibility for,” Russo said. “There was contaminated fill material that was put there historically, many years ago. They’re required by court order to clean out those properties. The city has been working for Honeywell for… a good part of… 19 years to get these specific areas remediated and cleaned up. It’s successfully done that, and right now they are sort of just wrapping up the last part of putting together standard operating procedures. So we have some sewer lines in the area underneath.”

According to Russo, the areas are limited to the west side of Bayonne. She said the resolution ratified the standard operating procedures with Honeywell.

“It’s just three discrete areas,” Russo said. “We put together standard operating procedures with Honeywell that will provide guidelines to… sewer workers as to… if there has to be sewer repairs, how we’re going to deal with that. Which is basically, I make a call to Honeywell and say, ‘We need to get to our sewer, please light the way and help us.’”

Russo continued: “Basically, what the SOP is doing is keeping Honeywell responsible to come to expose the pipe, if we have a sewer compromise, instead of Veolia coming and excavating the area and doing the fix, we’re going to call Honeywell because… there’s still areas there that may be in exceedance but not according to the NJDEP. Then we have them dig up the area, and then… Veolia is going to have workers there or their third party contractors.”

Law Director Jay Coffey concluded: “This is just the rules and regulations of the standard operating procedures that we’ll use in case something has to be done there.”

For updates on this and other stories, check www.hudsonreporter.com and follow us on Twitter @hudson_reporter. Daniel Israel can be reached at disrael@hudsonreporter.com.

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