Community meeting held to learn more about PFAS in Madison water

Published: Mar. 6, 2019 at 10:56 PM CST
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Curiosity and concern about the presence of PFAS in a nearby well brought community members to the Bashford United Methodist Church Wednesday night to learn more about the chemicals in their water.

The Eken Park and Emerson East Neighborhood Associations organized an informational event with representatives from Madison Water Utility and Madison & Dane County Public Health to do presentations and a question and answer session about PFAS.

The meeting comes after Madison Water Utility released a statement Monday announcing that Well 15 on Madison's north east side would be temporarily taken offline due to PFAS, a chemical, being found in the water.

The Co-Chair of the Emerson East Neighborhood Association said that hosting a meeting was a way to get some answers about the situation.

"It was really obvious kind of just from talking to neighbors and also a lot in the social media sites we're using, this news about those high PFAS testing values, are really - people are concerned, people want to know what's going on," said Indira Ceylan.

Madison & Dane County Public Health said the water is safe to drink. However, neighbors still had questions.

“You always wonder what does it mean? I’ve never heard about PFAS. It always sounds scary when you hear 'oh, there’s a substance in my water that’s not a good substance and there’s not enough regulation about how much should be in there,' so it’s concerning," said Ceylan. "I think I trust in the open dialogue we’re having to hopefully learn more and really to keep the anxiety to the amount that is reasonable."

Madison Water Utility said they believe the PFAS likely came from fire fighting foam used at Truax.

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