Mar 19, 2016 10:00 AM

Some Merrimack, Litchfield residents are getting bottled water amid PFOA concerns

MERRIMACK - Preliminary tests have shown evidence of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) in at least three private wells.

The state Department of Environmental Services began investigating PFOA levels after Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics in Merrimack noticed PFOA in the water at its plant about three weeks ago.

According to The New Hampshire Union Leader, James Martin, a public information officer with DES said, “The wells that tested the highest were closest to Saint-Gobain on the map.”

Martin said DES will provide bottled water to all homes where tests detect more than 100 parts per trillion of PFOA. Of the three wells where PFOA levels were detected above 100 ppt, two were on the same property in Litchfield, where one well, used primarily for farm animals, tested at 350 ppt of PFOA. The other well, in Merrimack, tested at 820 ppt of PFOA.

Results from the Merrimack Village Water District, which supplies water to 25,000 residents, showed PFOA levels ranging from 17 to 90 ppt.

PFOA is a man-made chemical, which was once used in Teflon. It has been linked to kidney cancer, testicular cancer and other health issues.

Public meetings to review the water test results will be held at 7 p.m. Wednesday at James Mastricola Upper Elementary School in Merrimack and at 7 p.m. Thursday at Litchfield Elementary School in Litchfield.

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