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Town of Cairo talks to residents about the PFOS in water supply

Feb 04, 2020 12:57 am
Two years after a state report, and three months after a newspaper story in the Times Union, the Town of Cairo faced up to the fact that its drinking water is poisoned with PFOS, a toxic forever chemical at a Feb. 3 meeting. The Town Board had a representative from Delaware Engineering speak on the subject, and also released a letter it is sending to all town residents about the poisoned water. The state's Department of Health sampled Cairo's water in 2016 and 2017. The first test found 13.3 parts per trillion in the town's well water, and 11.3 ppt in water treated with chlorine. In 2017 the results were a bit better: 8.37 ppt in untreated well water, and 8.51 ppt in the chlorinated water. The town gets its water from a well in the town park, near a firefighting training facility where foam used to put out fires was used often during firefighter training. The foam contains the toxic PFOS. Recently elected Town Supervisor John Coyne admitted the town board had not done anything on the water issue for the past two years before he took office. The letter says the only thing Cairo is doing now about the poison water is test it quarterly. Otherwise, they are asking questions of experts about what they could do, but have yet to take any other action. They are building a second expensive well next to the well that is drawing the poisoned water to serve as a back-up.
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