More wells found contaminated at Westchester Airport

Several groundwater monitoring wells on Westchester County Airport property have tested high for PFOS & PFOA. One well found 990 parts per trillion of PFOS & PFOA, over 14 times the EPA’s guideline level for drinking water. This is over 10 times the level initially found in a private well near the airport in July 2017.

The Journal News published David McKay Wilson’s report on February 1. Additionally, FiOS1 News’s Rai Raimundi broadcast a report on February 2.

The EPA and the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer both consider PFOA as having carcinogenic potential in humans.

According to Wilson, a state official said that there is no evidence that the toxins have seeped into the water supply. However, the DEC and county officials are still trying to determine where the contaminated groundwater flows.

CRCA was the first to publish a report about the contamination near the airport on January 9th. We filed a Freedom of Information request with the DEC to obtain the results of the original private well’s test on August 26, 2017. The DEC did not provide the information to us until January 9, 2018. The county did not disclose the existence or the results of the DEC-mandated groundwater testing with the public until Commissioner Vincent Kopicki was pressed by CRCA at the January 24th meeting of the Westchester County Airport Advisory Board.

CRCA suggests that anyone drinking well water in the vicinity of Westchester County Airport discuss with their local officials about testing their water for these substances. Several commercial labs provide testing of PFOA & PFOS in water samples.

We are alarmed at the lack of transparency around these findings. Westchester County appears to have failed to notify the public for nearly 6 months after first being alerted to the presence of these toxic chemicals. We urge full transparency from both the NY State’s DEC and Department of Health and from George Latimer’s new county administration for the sake of public health as results arrive. Please contact your local or county representatives if urgent guidance is required.

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