Rothschild shuts down 1 well over PFAS levels

PFAS discovered
PFAS discovered(MGN)
Published: Feb. 23, 2022 at 7:42 AM CST
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ROTHSCHILD, Wis. (WSAW) - The village of Rothschild has shut down one of its four well over concerning levels of PFAS.

Per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS, are a group of more than 4,000 manmade chemicals used to create products that resist heat, oil, stains, grease, and water. PFAS are most likely found on clothing, furniture, some adhesives, food packaging, and non-stick surfaces. The chemicals do not break down in the environment. PFAS can contaminate soil and drinking water sources. The chemicals can also build up in humans and animals.

PFAS concentrations were measured in each of the village’s four wells earlier this month. The levels ranged from ‘below’ to ‘just above’ the Wisconsin Department of Health Services recommended groundwater standards.

One of the wells, called ‘Well Four,’ was shut down after the findings. It had the highest number of the chemicals.

“Well Number Four was a well that we were looking at replacing anyway and now we’re thinking well number four will probably stay off at this point,” said Village Administrator Gary Olsen.

According to a news release, village leaders said they calculated and combined the remaining wells in a way that will provide all customers with drinking water below all recommended PFAS standards.

“We don’t know if this is a long-term solution yet, but it’s the most immediate one, and I think it’s a very good solution that we’re presented with right now,” said DNR Field Operations Director Kyle Burton.

The Rothschild Water Utility is not in violation of any current DNR drinking water standards or regulations.

The Rothschild Water Utility will confirm that the water leaving the treatment plant is below all recommended standards and guidance levels by resampling this week. Results are expected to be available 2-3 weeks from the time of sampling and be available at www.rothschildwi.com.

A full list of the sampling results, including the individual PFAS compounds, the reported concentrations and DHS recommended standards, can be found at www.rothschildwi.com.

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