Vt. governor, state officials answer water contamination questions at community meeting

shumlin north bennington pfoa_379629

NORTH BENNINGTON, Vt. (NEWS10) – For the second time in one month, the Vermont governor addressed the PFOA contamination in North Bennington.

Vermont state officials, including Gov. Peter Shumlin and the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation commissioner, held a meeting Wednesday evening at Bennington College. They answered questions for more than two hours from every person in attendance.

They wrote almost every concern on poster board sized papers for people to review. But each question, comment or concern was given a definitive answer.

The health effects surrounding PFOA contamination was a common question among the people of North Bennington on Wednesday. It’s the latest village in a growing list of Northeastern communities struck with fear because of poisoned water.

Private wells in North Bennington showed PFOA levels ranging from 38 parts per trillion to 2,730 ppt.

“What about our extended families?” one woman asked. “Our grandchildren that we watch that don’t live in the area, but they do drink a lot of water?”

“When the health department does your Bliss test, we’ll make sure that those people get tested, too,” Shumlin responded.

Kathryn Loomis lives in North Bennington. Her private well showed levels of 362 ppt. On Wednesday, she learned the DEC will install a carbon filter on Sunday.

“I’m very impressed,” she said. “Just the way they’ve gotten right on it, and they’ve called us on Saturday, Sunday. They called us every day.”

Officials also announced that blood tests are set to begin in April.

Since a lot of information was discussed during the meeting, the DEC has set up a number for anyone with more questions, concerns regarding anything on the water contamination, or bottled water delivery.

The number is (802) 828-1038.

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