WOBURN (CBS) – Two separate issues have residents questioning the safety of their water in Woburn.
Over the past few days, many people have reported having cloudy water from their faucets. This happened around the same time residents received a letter about high levels of chemicals in the water detected in the summer and fall.
Debbie Fagan, longtime resident of Woburn, had murky water in her home this week.
“It was almost like someone poured water on the paint,” Fagan said. “I’ve noticed for the past few days it’s been cloudy and almost a white film.”
Stacy Mannke resident also has murky-looking water.
“Very white and cloudy,” Mannke said.
Mayor Scott Galvin said the reason for the gloom was changes in weather and the amount of oxygen in the water. He said the turbid water was unrelated to a letter sent to residents this week about levels of the chemical PFAS in the water.
PFAS chemicals, often referred to as “permanent chemicals,” are common in consumer products such as non-stick pans and some fire-fighting foams. They have been linked to a wide range of adverse health conditions, including some cancers.
Massachusetts considers anything over 20 nanograms of PFAS per liter of water to be unsafe.
Based on the letter received by the resident from the city’s water authority, Woburn’s water testing in the third quarter of this year showed 24 nanograms per liter, well above what the state considers safe.
Letters from the city indicate that residents of susceptible groups – such as pregnant or nursing women, infants and those diagnosed by a healthcare provider with compromised immune systems – should not be consumed, drunk or cooked with water when PFAS levels are above 20 nanograms per liter.
According to Woburn’s Department of Water, in October, the P-FAS level remained above what the state deems acceptable before dropping to an acceptable level in November.
Mayor Galvin said that levels are still a concern and that the city is working to clean up the water. This process can take 18 to 24 months.
Many residents who questioned the timing of the letter said they received it months after the water was deemed unsafe.
Galvin said that the letter sent to residents about P-FAS levels was consistent with the environmental protection department’s notification requirements.
But between receiving this notice and the way the water looks, some residents hesitate to even turn on the faucet.
“At first I thought it was a coincidence that my water was cloudy and it got this message today,” says Mannke.
WBZ-TV has reached out to the state for comment on this story and we will continue to monitor it.
https://boston.cbslocal.com/2021/12/09/cloudy-water-woburn-pfas-levels/ Cloudy Water and Warning Notices Elevated PFAS Levels Worry Woburn Residents Their Water is Not Safe – CBS Boston