Officials Plan Dye Testing in Oyster River

May 1, 2017

The waste water treatment plant in Durham.
Credit www.ci.durham.nh.us

State and federal officials plan to release dye into the Oyster River this week in an effort to study how water flows from a sewage plant along the river.

Beginning Tuesday night, officials with state and federal environmental agencies will inject a reddish dye into the town of Durham’s wastewater treatment plant for about 12 hours.

The experiment is designed to shed light on how wastewater flows from the plant. It could lead to new boundaries for where shellfish harvesting is allowed.

Chris Nash is with the state Department of Environmental Services.

“In the vicinity of the plant you’ll be able to see -- the river will look red. But it pretty quickly dissipates to where you can’t really see it with the naked eye, you really need the instruments to know that its there.”

Officials say the dye is not harmful to humans or the environment. It should dissipate within a few days.