What is PER- and POLY-FLUOROALKYL SUBSTANCES (PFAS)?
Per-and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances or “PFAS” has become an issue of public health concern in numerous contexts recently including in public drinking water supplies. PFAS are a large family of chemicals in use since the 1950s to make a wide variety of stain-resistant, water-resistant, and non-stick consumer products, including food packaging, outdoor clothing, and non-stick pans. PFAS have also been used in certain types of firefighting foams utilized by the U.S. military, local fire departments, and airports.
In January 2022, the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) implemented new standards for public drinking water systems to begin testing for PFAS.
Olympic View’s drinking water remains safe, and we have not detected any PFAS contamination levels beyond trace amounts well below state action levels.
For more information about PFAS, including the health and safety risks associated with these compounds, visit the Environmental Protection Agency and Washington State Department of Health websites:
Environmental Protection Agency – www.epa.gov
Washington State Department of Health – www.doh.wa.gov
What are the health effects of PFAS?
PFAS is a possible human carcinogen according to the International Agency for Research on Cancer. In addition, studies suggest a certain level of PFAS exposure can cause adverse effects in humans, including increased cholesterol, thyroid and liver disease, decreased fertility, lower birth weights, decreased vaccine response and pregnancy-induced hypertension.
Ensuring Safe, Reliable Drinking Water: Addressing PFAS at the Olympic View Water & Sewer District
Our top priority is ensuring the water we serve is safe, reliable and meets all state and federal drinking water health standards.
Like many communities throughout the nation, trace amounts of PFAS have been found in our water supply. These trace amounts are well below State and Federal drinking water standards. Based on testing we have conducted and will continue to conduct, Olympic View’s drinking water remains safe and protected from contaminants.
We are committed to safeguarding our water supply from PFAS through testing, technology, and transparency.
How is Olympic View safeguarding drinking water from PFAS?
Our team relies on a three-pronged approach to addressing PFAS:
Testing: Olympic View Water proactively and voluntarily samples water at entry points in our distribution system to ensure that water meets the state’s regulations for PFAS and other contaminants. This testing is in addition to the continuous tests we run daily, weekly, and annually to safeguard our water supply. We will continue to regularly test for PFAS.
Technology: As technology continues to advance, water agencies can detect ever-smaller amounts of chemicals in the water, and it allows state and federal agencies to revise water quality standards when needed. Our Agency has already taken immediate steps to address PFAS concerns through testing to ensure that our drinking water is safe.
Transparency: We are committed to communicating important, up-to-date information on PFAS with our customers. We will update this page regularly with new information about our efforts to diligently monitor for PFAS contamination.
SPU June Testing Results: In June of this year, SPU tested for PFAS in their water system. At that time, there were no PFAS detected in the sampling.
Please see links below for additional information on PFAS:
American Water Works Association – www.awwa.org