Bethpage Water District (BWD) Board of Commissioners, Chairman William J. Ellinger, Treasurer John R. Sullivan, Secretary Gary S. Bretton and Secretary to the Board Sal Greco, recently invited local students to tour the district’s plant on Sophia Street in Bethpage. Throughout the tour, Superintendent Michael Boufis and Senior Water Plant Operator Peter Schimmel detailed the path water takes before reaching faucets, answering Plainedge Middle School students’ questions about the District’s defenses against the Northrop Grumman plume and ensuring the water is safe to drink.
“We are excited that schools are including water education into their curriculum,” said Board of Commissioners Chairman William J. Ellinger. “It is important for students to understand where their water comes from and how it is treated to know their water is safe to drink.”
The BWD team led students throughout the plant to teach them how a well is drilled, where the water comes from and how it is treated before entering homes. The tour allowed students to observe carbon used in the carbon filtration system and the filters used in air stripping towers. The students track the Northrop Grumman plume in class and were able to visualize its boundaries in addition to the affect it has on the District’s service during the tour.
“These tours offer the unique opportunity to meet real professionals who can bring their lessons to life,” said Board of Commissioners Treasurer John R. Sullivan. “Students are able to ask their questions to experts in the field.”
Plant number four at Sophia Street was originally built in 1961 and was rehabilitated in 2010. The students toured two wells that pump water at a capacity of 1,400 gallons each per minute for a total of 4 million gallons of water a day.
“It is important for our youth to be aware of changes, improvements and even potential threats tour water supply,” said Board of Commissioners Secretary Gary S. Bretton. “By educating our students about their water supply, we give them the power to find new solutions and uncover the future of Long Island’s water supply.”
To schedule a tour of a Bethpage Water District plant, please call the district at 516-931-0093. For more information, please visit www.bethpagewater.com or the district’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/BethpageWaterDistrict.
Photo 1: Bethpage Water District invites local Plainedge Middle School students to tour Plant #4 to learn where their water comes from and to supplement their lessons in school.
Photo 2: Brookhaven Lab's Supervisor of Water/Wastewater, Frank Mancini, shows local students the layers beneath the grounds surface, how water is transported from aquifers and the path it takes before it reaches their homes during a tour of the Bethpage Water District Plant #4.
Photo 3: Bethpage Water District Senior Water Plant Operator Peter Schimmel teaches local students the water filtration process during a tour of Bethpage Water District Plant #4.
Photo 4: Bethpage Water District Superintendent Michael Boufis explains the minerals used during the water treatment process during a tour of Bethpage Water District Plant #4.
Photo 5: Local Plainedge Students analyze the carbon used during the water treatment process with Bethpage Water District personnel during a tour of the Bethpage Water District Plant #4.