The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, April 14, 2000


Board of health insists on perc test within leaching field

In reviewing proposed septic system plans, the Carlisle Board of Health pays attention to multiple details. One of the most important is the percolation rate of the soil.

Jody Borghetti of Stamski and McNary Engineering presented a plan for a septic system repair in a continued public hearing for 272 Rutland Street on April 5. Although the board appeared comfortable with granting waivers on distance to wetlands and the well, chair Steve Opolski expressed his discomfort with a plan that showed no percolation test within the boundaries of the leaching field.

Borghetti defended her design by explaining that there is rock ledge throughout the site and the leaching field is located quite a distance from the tank. Moving the leach bed further would require a retaining wall and more grading; this was the only place with a good perc rate and pretty consistent soil, stated Borghetti. Homeowner Judy Taylor added that the tests were done in pouring rain, She also pointed out that there was a stone wall on one side and a driveway on the other. The other homeowner, Ted Byer, said he didn't understand the issue. Opolski explained that if the perc rate is not as good in the center of the field as it is at the edge of the field, the design would not be adequate for the soil to absorb the septic discharge.

The hearing concluded with another continuation to April 18, by which time another perc test will have been run in the center of the proposed leaching field. If the perc rate is adequate, there will be no need to change the design other than to document the additional perc test. If the perc rate is not appropriate, the size of the leaching field will have to be increased.

Homeowners Taylor and Byer are requesting a voluntary septic system upgrade to be in compliance with current regulations for their 1940s house. They are not experiencing any septic system failure, but they wish to comply with the current environmental requirements.

2000 The Carlisle Mosquito