County Department of Health Services (SCDHS) announced today that it will be
conducting a private well survey in the East Patchogue/South Medford area. SCDHS would like to sample private wells in
this area at no charge. Residents in the survey area currently using a private
well may wish to take advantage of free bottled water as a precaution until
results of their water test are available.
announcement follows the detection of perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS) in a
nearby public water supply well. Though there were no detections of PFOS above
health guidance levels in the public water distributed to customers, the
Suffolk County Water Authority has taken the wells out of service.
PFOS, and a
related chemical perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), are part of a class of
chemicals known as PFAS (perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances).
PFAS have been used in a number of industrial and commercial products such as
firefighting foam, as well as coatings that repel water, oil, stains and
grease, such as food packaging, water-resistant clothing and stain-resistant carpeting. Thus,
people may be exposed to PFOS and PFOA through air, water, or soil from
industrial sources and from consumer products.
States EPA has established a health advisory level for PFOS and PFOA in
drinking water at a concentration of 70 parts per trillion (ppt). According to the EPA, Health Advisory Levels
are established to protect the most sensitive populations, including fetuses
during pregnancy and breastfed babies, against potential adverse health effects
from exposure to contaminants in drinking water.
by the Suffolk County Water Authority has shown that the concentration of PFOS
and PFOA in the public water supply in this area has not exceeded the health
would like to sample an estimated 58 properties that are served with a private
well in this area at no charge to homeowners. Residents whose property is
served by a private well that is located in the area bounded on the north by
Jamaica Avenue, on the south by Montauk Highway, on the west by Buffalo Avenue,
Pennsylvania Avenue, and the Swan River, and on the east by Sipp Avenue and
Gazzola Drive (see attached map) are advised to contact the SCDHS Office of
Water Resources at 631-852-5810 to have their wells tested. The analysis for
PFAS will be conducted by the New York State Department of Health Wadsworth
time, there is no known source of PFAS contamination in this area. The SCDHS
will work with and support New York State Department of Environmental
Conservation (DEC) efforts to investigate potential sources.
The New York
State Department of Health has indicated that consumption (drinking or cooking)
is the primary exposure concern for PFAS in drinking water. Bathing and
showering are not expected to be a concern even if PFAS are present in the
water supply. Out of an abundance of caution, the DEC is providing free bottled
water to residents who live in the private well survey area described above,
pending results of their private well. If you use a private well for drinking
or cooking purposes and live in the survey area, you may call 631-852-4820 to
schedule a delivery of bottled water.
connected to a public water supply do not need to have their water tested as
the public water supply is routinely tested.
with general questions about health effects of PFAS are advised to call the New
York State Department of Health at 518-402-7950 Monday through Friday: 8 a.m. -
who are unsure if they are served by public water may call the Suffolk County
Water Authority at 631-698-9500.
who have questions about private well water in Suffolk County may contact the
SCDHS Office of Water Resources at 631-852-5810.
additional information about PFAS, please visit the SCDHS website at: www.suffolkcountyny.gov/health/pfcwaterinfo.
information on perfluorinated compounds, see USEPA Fact Sheet: PFOA & PFOS
Drinking Water Health Advisories.