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avenue bridge was widened and deepened. This new channel, however, is still obstructed somewhat by what seems to be an unnecessary dam, causing backwater in the river above the bridge.
The high water conditions of the Bronx river caused by the temporary damming of the stream at the Hamilton avenue bridge flooded a considerable area of rather low swamp land above Hamilton avenue, and more especially above Hopkins avenue. This area is covered with cattails and flag and other aquatic growths, thus creating and maintaining mosquito breeding places and places for the harboring of mosquitoes during the day. It was alleged that mosquitoes and malaria were much more prevalent during the past summer in the section of White Plains above the Hamilton avenue bridge than during previous years, and these conditions were attributed to the unusually high water in the river above the Hamilton avenue bridge.
It was learned from the Bronx park commission that steps had been taken to improve the conditions along this river, and a contract has been made for straightening and deepening the channel of the river, or for the building of a new channel from the Main street bridge, just south of Hamilton avenue, to a point near Hopkins avenue, a distance of about 1,500 feet. This improve. ment will lower the level of the river at Hamilton avenue nearly 4 feet and should drain the low swampy area above this point. It was also learned that a number of lakes, to be used as bathing and wading pools, are to be formed between White Plains and Valhalla.
It is important that the existing channel above the Main street bridge, which is to be abandoned when the new channel is completed, should be so filled as to leave no stagnant pools which might form mosquito breeding places. Special precautions should also be taken by the Bronx parkway commission in making the proposed river improvements and in forming lakes to remove the cattails and flag and other aquatic growths from the sides of the stream and the edges and bottom of lakes formed in order to destroy, as far as possible, all mosquito breeding places and prevent the establishment of such places. The banks of the stream should be sharp and clean and the lakes or pools should be as free from vegetation as possible.
Hunt's brook, against which complaint was made, is a small stream which rises in the town of Greenburg, west of White Plains, and flows in a northeasterly direction, discharging into the Bronx river, about one-half mile north of the Main street bridge in White Plains. It forms the boundary line between the city of White Plains and the town of Greenburg for a distance of about one mile above its confluence with the Bronx river. It is the existing condition of this lower section of the brook and more particularly that portion of the brook above and below the Central avenue and the Tarrytown road highway bridge, against which complaint was made.
Above the Tarrytown road bridge the brook flows through the back yards of the tenement houses, located both on the White Plains and on the town of Greenburg margins of the stream. These tenements are occupied largely by Italians. Below the bridge it flows through pasture land owned by C. F. McLean.
The brook in this section is 2 or 3 fcet wide and has a fairly rapid flow. There were no stagnant pools nor were there any evidences of mosquito larvæ. The flow of the stream was, however, obstructed somewhat both above and below the Tarrytown road bridge by debris such as tin cans, old bottles, parts of old iron bedsteads, etc., which have been thrown into it presumably from the houses back of which it flows. No garbage or other putrescible matter was found in the stream.
Although the conditions of the brook could hardly be said to constitute a nuisance detrimental to health, it was nevertheless unsightly and objectionable and constitutes a public nuisance, and immediate steps should be taken to have the brook cleaned and to hare any pollution found to exist removed. Signs should also be posted along the brook prohibiting the discharge of refuse into it. Inasmuch as this portion of the brook forms the boundary line between the city of Thite Plains and town of Greenburg, the cleaning of the brook requires the joint action of the boards of health of these two municipalities.
In conclusion I would state that it appears from the investigation that mosquitoes had been unusually prevalent; that there have been a number of cases of malaria in the sections of the city of White Plains along the Bronx river above the Main street bridge during the past summer. These conditions have, in all probability been due to the high water conditions in the river and the flooding of low lands by the back water caused by the temporary dam across the river at Hamilton avenue bridge. These conditions should be effectually remedied by the proposed straightening and deepening of the Bronx river in this section.
The throwing of refuse into Hunt's brook created objectionable conditions and a nuisance which should be remedied with as little delay as possible, and immediate steps should be taken by the boards of health of the city of White Plains and the town of Greenburg to have the brook cleaned and signs posted prohibiting the discharge of refuse.
I therefore recommend that copies of this report be sent to the local board of health, to the Bronx valley sewer commission, and to the complainants, and that the local authorities be urged to at once follow out the suggestions for improvements in conditions outlined in this reporti
Chief Engineer ALBANY, N. Y., September 19, 1917
Copies of this report were sent to the various parties noted above, urging that they carry out the recommendations of the report.
In addition to the foregoing, inspections were made and reports transmitted to local authorities or advice was given by correspondence in the matter of abatement of nuisances at the following places: Andes (Town)
Port Chester Brighton (Town)
Shushan Cheektowaga (Town)
Stony Point Hunter
Tuckahoe Lisbon (Town)
Unadilla Long Beach
Valhalla Mamaroneck (Town)
Wallkill (Town) Monticello
Walworth (Town) Naples
INVESTIGATION OF MILK PASTEURIZING PLANTS
The investigation of the sanitary condition and operating efficiency of milk pasteurizing plants throughout the State was undertaken in 1917 for the first time by the Engineering Division. Previous to this time little more than bacterial examination work had been carried on by this Department in connection with milk pasteurization although for a number of years plants shipping pasteurized milk to New York City have been under the supervision and inspection of the New York City Department of Health. At the beginning of the year, however, careful preparations were made to conduct a more comprehensive investigation of the milk pasteurizing plants throughout the State with special reference to the sanitary conditions at the plant, the type and adequacy of the apparatus used, the effectiveness of the methods and processes employed and the care taken to keep utensils and apparatus in sanitary condition. Up to the present the work of investigation has not included pasteurizing plants whose output is shipped, exclusively, to New York City.
In a comparatively small number of plants, at the beginning of the investigation, samples of raw and pasteurized milk were collected for bacterial analyses but as the investigation progressed it became evident that with the limited force available for the work, quicker and more effective results would be accomplished by confining the work largely to sanitary surveys of the various plants and inspections of the equipment and operation of these plants before extended analytical work should be undertaken.
Inspections were started in January and were carried on throughout the year. The inspections have been made principally by one of the engineers of the Department although during the fall several inspectors have been engaged in the work.
During the year full investigations were made of one hundred and twenty pasteurizing plants while some sixty plants have been reinvestigated. Following the original investigations recomendations for improvements in apparatus or in the operating con