Antiquated water well leads to boil advisory

PFOA filters activated in Petersburgh but bacteria issues remain

by Brendan J. Lyons, January 27, 2o17


A carbon filter system designed to remove toxic chemicals from the Petersburgh water system was activated this week. But residents should boil their drinking water because the town’s well does not comply with health regulations.

The water plant in the heart of Petersburgh serves 72 households. The underground well along Route 22 is about a mile from the Taconic plastics plant that has been a focus of state investigations into the contamination of groundwater with perfluorooctanoic acid.

Ben Krahforst, the town’s water district supervisor, said two filters installed on the public water system by Taconic are removing all traces of PFOA. But Krahforst said the antiquated well needs several repairs to bring it in compliance and alleviate concerns about potential bacterial contamination.

The repairs, including work needed on the water tower, will cost more than $25,000. A town official said their requests to get aid from the state have not been answered.

The primary well used for the public water system has a PFOA level of about 130 parts per trillion, which is above the 70 ppt advisory set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

“As long as the water is boiled there’s no problem,” Krahforst said.

Learn More