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Getting To The Bottom Of The Loud Noise In Marion

MARION, Iowa (CBS 2/FOX 28) -- You hear all sorts of noises in your neighborhood. Maybe your neighbor Darrell is mowing, or Laura's grandson could be running through the sprinkler.

"It's a nice and quiet area here," Darrell Hennessey said.

But they haven't had a neighbor like this ever.

"There were jets flying over. That's what I thought," Laura Cira said.

That neighbor is a well station in northern Marion.

"Northway Well is air surging our Site 7 well," said Jerry Blazek, Marion Water Department operations supervisor.

The culprit is fine, white sand, which is deep down in the aquifer. It's been clogging the well's pump, so they had to find some way to get the sound out.

"And he releases that valve, and it lets that air rush out," Jerry said.

The air blasts every 15 minutes or so for 20 seconds at a time.

The city doesn't deny -- this thing is loud.

"You hear it, and it sounds like a jet engine," Blazek said.

"It wakes us up. Big noise," Laura said.

The well was put in last summer, and they caught the problem shortly after.

They started the air surging process about five months ago, but Blazek said people maybe didn't notice until the weather turned nice and folks got outside.

"Wouldn't want it indefinitely, but we can bear it for awhile," Darrell said.

For that, there is good news.

"We're hoping the next two to three weeks, we'll be totally done with this process," Jerry said.

The Marion Water Department said they posted information about the air surging on its Web site and that you can continue to follow that for updates on the well project.

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