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Tests Show Elevated PFAS Levels in Farmington River Fish

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Tests Find Elevated PFAS Levels in Farmington River Fish
The state Department of Public Health says tests show elevated levels of PFAS in fish in part of the Farmington River after a spill of firefighting foam at Bradley Airport in June. (Published Friday, Oct 18, 2019 ) The state Department of Public Health says tests show elevated levels of PFAS in fish in part of the... See More
The state Department of Public Health says tests show elevated levels of PFAS in fish in part of the Farmington River after a spill of firefighting foam at Bradley Airport in June. (Published Friday, Oct 18, 2019)

The Connecticut Department of Public Health is keeping its warning not to eat fish from parts of the Farmington River after tests showed elevated levels of the chemical PFAS in those fish.

The tests were done after a large spill of firefighting foam at Bradley Airport in June made it into the river. That foam contains a chemical called PFAS.

On Thursday, Department of Public Heath and DEEP said that fish tested by Signature Flight’s consultant where the firefighting foam entered the river, contained 172 parts per billion of PFAS. The health department advises any fish containing over 159 parts per billion of PFAS is unsafe to eat.

"The fish downstream from MDC - those numbers are exceptionally high,"Windsor mayor Don Trinks said. "We are really in that test, monitor, and wait mode."

Trinks says now state leaders will have to determine what to do with the numbers as the advisory not to eat fish on the Farmington caught downstream of the Rainbow Dam continues.

"I’m drinking Poland Springs," Brenda Corbiel said.

Upstream, residents like Corbiel are even more concerned about their groundwater after learning the fish testing results. She lives near where some of the foam came through a manhole on Rainbow Road after the spill.

"Until I know for sure that our wells are safe, it’s better to be safe than sorry," Corbiel said.

DEEP said Friday that it is waiting on additional fish tissue sampling collected in September, along with soil samples from Rainbow Road before deciding if private wells nearby need to be tested for PFAS.

Corbiel said she’d like to know sooner than later if her water has been affected.

"I haven’t heard anything and I feel that they should test our wells," Corbiel said.

DEEP said they expect to have those results on the additional fish tissue and soil testing from Rainbow Road by the end of the year.

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