Elevated PFAS levels found in Grand Haven school

The Ottawa County Department of Public Health is working with the Michigan Department of Health & Human Services, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality and Grand Haven Public Schools after being notified on Monday, Oct. 29, of elevated levels of perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) at Grand Haven’s Robinson Elementary School.
Initial test results for Robinson Elementary received by the DEQ on Monday, Oct. 29, found combined perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS) levels of 110 parts per trillion, which is above the EPA health advisory level of 70 parts per trillion.
School leaders have immediately restricted access to drinking water in the building, and bottled water is being provided to the school through the Ottawa County Sheriff’s Emergency Management Division and MDHHS.
The DEQ has taken a second sample of the school’s water and expects the results Oct. 31.
No other schools in Grand Haven are at risk from elevated PFAS.
All the other schools in the district are served by the Northwest Ottawa Water System, which has been tested for PFAS and the results were below health advisory levels.
The district is working closely with every agency involved to keep families informed and up-to-date on any developments in this situation.
Drinking is the primary way PFAS can get into the body.
Washing hands and other skin contact is not considered a health concern as PFAS does not move easily through skin.
Once the school’s water test results come back, the DEQ will determine the next steps for households and businesses in the area served by groundwater.

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