Homes near quarry sites can suffer damages such as cracked foundations, basement flooding, damage to in-ground pools, wells and septic systems, cracks in interior walls, ceiling collapse, holes in roofs and walls from flying rock debris, broken windows and more. Damage to water supplies and septic systems creates a health issue that may render the home uninhabitable. Blasting can release radon into the basements of surrounding homes. Radon causes lung cancer. This information has been obtained from complaints filed with fire departments, resident letters to local officials in various towns with quarries and documentation provided by at public hearings in various towns with quarries or opposing a planned quarry.
According to the SME Mining Handbook, flyrock can travel up to 3,300 feet. It can be a scattering of small rocks up to large boulders. It can smash through windows, doors, walls and roofs, creating a significant public safety hazard.
The roads in Berkley, Freetown are small, two lane narrow streets without street lights or sidewalks. These roads are lined with families with small children. School buses make pick ups and drop offs on Bryant St. and near-by roads. In towns with quarries residents complain about trucks speeding in residential neighborhoods, trucks spilling gravel and stone onto the roads, trucks dropping rocks onto cars, trucks shedding dust clouds behind them and traveling through town uncovered. There are also more cases of truck and pedestrian accidents and truck and passenger car accidents. Trucks loaded down with stone and gravel also cause excessive wear to the road, requiring more time and money in road repairs. More trucks create more emissions affecting health and air quality.
Areas of Berkley most directly affected would be Bryant St. Anthony St. Equestrian Way, Crystal, Elmwood, Myricks Street, Old Myricks St. and Paddelford, but noise and blasting may affect homes even further away. Areas of Freetown most directly affected include Bryant St., Richmond Road and Beechwood Road. Areas of Lakeville that could be affected include Malbone St., Peirce Ave, Mill St., Trinity Lane, Great Cedar Drive, Josh Road, Emerson Drive, Hawthorn Drive and Howland Road. Keep in mind that ground water could be affected for a mile or more. Noise travels through the air. Rock crushers can be heard for more then a mile away. Dust travels on the wind. Vibrations from blasting may travel a considerable distance. In actuality, a broader area could be affected.