On Tuesday night in the Lynn City Hall Council Chambers, Council President Darren Cyr held a captive audience of people like him who love King’s Beach but are sick of the high bacteria counts, beach closures and people being sick after swimming there.
The culprit is Stacy Brook on the Lynn-Swampscott line, and the associated outfall pipe associated with the drainage. Years ago the drains were separated for water and the other for sewer. During heavy rain events there can be spillover. There is also yard runoff with pesticides pet waste and bird waste.
“There is an issue,” Cyr said. “Our state delegation is working to fix this. We have to split this cost.”
Cyr estimated the project to cost at $4 million for about 4,000 linear feet of pipe, or more than half a mile. The permitting would take two to five years to complete.
The high bacteria counts often happen after large rain events and there have been several conversations about raw sewerage being dump.
“I used to take my dogs down there walking and they would get sick. I don’t think you get sick from clean water,” said resident Eileen Patterson.
Cyr knows it’s going to take more than one community to solve the problem. He intends on inviting Swampscott officials to another meeting on Aug. 20 to continue discussions.
Someone even suggested inviting Gov. Charlie Baker since he lives in Swampscott and is steps away from King’s Beach.
Bruce Berman head of Save the Harbor/Save the Bay said Swampscott’s system is a major contributor and Lynn storm water pipes are old.
“We want additional signage to get people to stay out of the water,” said Bob Tucker, head of the Friends of Nahant Beach. The signs now are small, red and only in English. “Yet people are in the water.”
Another resident, Suzanne Chapman told how her son and six friends all came down with intestinal problems after going for a swim at King’s Beach earlier this summer. She was upset that it was the same day the warning signs went up.
“If we extend the pipe and don’t fix the root of the problem it’s a waste,” said resident Pam Edwards.
“This is a move to start somewhere,” Cyr said.
Resident Nicole Bouchard said there should be a demand for an audit of the sewer system and who is dumping raw sewerage into the system.
Cyr urged anyone concerned to write their legislator.