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State seeks alternative methods for cleanup of paint spill on Route 202 in South Hadley, Holyoke

  • Sections of Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road between Lyman Street (Route 33) and Newton Street and continues in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street through the rotary, shown here, and on to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.<br/><br/><br/>KEVIN GUTTING

    Sections of Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road between Lyman Street (Route 33) and Newton Street and continues in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street through the rotary, shown here, and on to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.


    KEVIN GUTTING Purchase photo reprints »

  • Sections of U.S. Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road between Lyman Street (Rt. 33) and Newton Street and continues in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street through the rotary, shown here, and on to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.<br/>KEVIN GUTTING

    Sections of U.S. Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road between Lyman Street (Rt. 33) and Newton Street and continues in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street through the rotary, shown here, and on to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.
    KEVIN GUTTING Purchase photo reprints »

  • Sections of U.S. Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road between Lyman Street (Rt. 33) and Newton Street and continues here in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.<br/>KEVIN GUTTING

    Sections of U.S. Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road between Lyman Street (Rt. 33) and Newton Street and continues here in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.
    KEVIN GUTTING Purchase photo reprints »

  • Sections of U.S. Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road, seen here, between Lyman Street (Rt. 33) and Newton Street and continues in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.<br/>KEVIN GUTTING

    Sections of U.S. Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road, seen here, between Lyman Street (Rt. 33) and Newton Street and continues in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.
    KEVIN GUTTING Purchase photo reprints »

  • Sections of U.S. Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road between Lyman Street (Rt. 33) and Newton Street and continues here in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.<br/>KEVIN GUTTING

    Sections of U.S. Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road between Lyman Street (Rt. 33) and Newton Street and continues here in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.
    KEVIN GUTTING Purchase photo reprints »

  • Sections of U.S. Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road between Lyman Street (Rt. 33) and Newton Street and continues in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street through the rotary, shown here, and on to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.<br/>KEVIN GUTTING

    Sections of U.S. Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road between Lyman Street (Rt. 33) and Newton Street and continues in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street through the rotary, shown here, and on to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.
    KEVIN GUTTING Purchase photo reprints »

  • Sections of Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road between Lyman Street (Route 33) and Newton Street and continues in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street through the rotary, shown here, and on to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.<br/><br/><br/>KEVIN GUTTING
  • Sections of U.S. Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road between Lyman Street (Rt. 33) and Newton Street and continues in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street through the rotary, shown here, and on to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.<br/>KEVIN GUTTING
  • Sections of U.S. Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road between Lyman Street (Rt. 33) and Newton Street and continues here in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.<br/>KEVIN GUTTING
  • Sections of U.S. Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road, seen here, between Lyman Street (Rt. 33) and Newton Street and continues in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.<br/>KEVIN GUTTING
  • Sections of U.S. Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road between Lyman Street (Rt. 33) and Newton Street and continues here in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.<br/>KEVIN GUTTING
  • Sections of U.S. Route 202 in South Hadley are splattered with yellow paint. Paint was spilled on the centerline of Granby Road between Lyman Street (Rt. 33) and Newton Street and continues in the westbound lane of Purple Heart Drive from Newton Street through the rotary, shown here, and on to the Muller Bridge over the Connecticut River.<br/>KEVIN GUTTING

The spill occurred May 1 when approximately 100 gallons of paint were spilled along Route 202 between South Hadley and Holyoke, according to the Massachusetts Department of Transportation.

South Hadley Town Administrator Michael Sullivan said he has received no official word on whether the state intends to remove the paint amid continuing road and bridge reconstruction in the area.

“I was to understand that MassDOT was just going to wait for the paint to wear out,” Sullivan said. “I think one of the frustrations is that we’re spending millions of dollars doing this road and bridge work and when you get to the finish, you have this bizarre situation that makes this whole project look a little less than professional.”

A MassDOT paint truck traveling to Greenfield left the agency’s South Hadley facility May 1 with a broken hose, causing the brightly colored paint to spill onto the road. The splattered paint marred a lengthy section of the recently resurfaced Route 202 (also known as Granby Road) and overlaps the white dotted center line in many areas.

The spilled paint continues along the center line south through the Route 202 rotary, across the Joseph E. Muller* Bridge over the Connecticut River and to the intersection of Linden and Hampden streets in Holyoke, where the worst of the spill occurred.

Meantime, MassDOT continues to work on a multimillion-dollar bridge replacement project near the rotary.

State transportation officials said the truck that spilled the paint was en route to Greenfield, where new pavement markings were planned at the rotary off exit 26 of Interstate 91.

Contacted this week, MassDOT said initial attempts to power wash the paint spill were unsuccessful. The proper water pressure that would remove the paint was causing the road surface to crack and break, according to Michael Verseckes, a MassDOT spokesman.

Verseckes said the state agency is seeking cost-effective proposals to remove the paint by alternative means that will not have a detrimental effect on the road surface.

“As far as other alternatives, the possibility exists for the use of certain chemicals to remove the paint,” Verseckes told the Gazette in an email. “However, well prior to that, MassDOT would determine whether the use of chemicals could be done in a manner that is safe and not toxic or harmful to humans, the roadway and the environment.”

Holyoke Department of Public Works Superintendent William D. Fuqua said city officials contacted MassDOT shortly after the paint spill and want to see the road cleaned up. The largest blotches of paint are visible near Lyman and Hampden streets where Fuqua said the truck driver apparently detected the spill. Some of the paint was spread further around by tire treads.

“It’s where the mess stopped,” Fuqua said.

“The word we got from their maintenance staff was they were going to return with a pressure washer and blast the excess paint off the pavement,” he said. “We’ve been concerned and interested in seeing that it be cleaned up. It’s a little more than you can overlook.”

Dan Crowley can be reached at dcrowley@gazettenet.com.

* CORRECTION: This story has been corrected from its original version in which the wrong name was given for the bridge over the Connecticut River in South Hadley.

I saw this mess on Friday. Masshighway is a freaking joke. Let it wear off. The driver should not be fired, but the person or persons at mASShighway who made the decision to let it wear off should be fired!

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