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Water Quality
From time to time the Water Treatment Plant receives resident questions and concerns regarding the look, taste, odor, and water quality data of our drinking water. Listed below are common questions that we receive and their most common answers. If your question is not listed here, or if you need additional information, please call the Water Treatment Plant at 847.433.4355.

Perfluoroalkyl Substances (PFASs)
Includes Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) 
On May 25, 2016, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) established the health advisory levels for PFOA and PFOS at 70 parts per trillion (ppt).

Health advisories are not regulations, but provide technical guidance to help state and local officials and managers of water systems protect public health. They identify concentrations of contaminants above which adverse health effects are possible and provide testing methods and treatment techniques.

Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) are fluorinated organic chemicals that are part of a larger group of chemicals referred to as perfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs). PFOA and PFOS have been the most extensively produced and studied of these chemicals. They have been used to make carpets, clothing, fabrics for furniture, paper packaging for food and other materials (e.g., cookware) that are resistant to water, grease or stains. They are also used for firefighting at airfields and in a number of industrial processes.

While consumer products and food are a large source of exposure to these chemicals for most people, drinking water can be an additional source in the small percentage of communities where these chemicals have contaminated water supplies. Such contamination is typically localized and associated with a specific facility, for example, an industrial facility where these chemicals were produced or used to manufacture other products or an airfield at which they were used for firefighting.

Highland Park tested for both PFOA and PFOS as part of our UCMR3 testing in 2013-2014. There was no detection of these contaminants in any of the 4 sampling events during a 12 month period.


Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA)
MDL = 20 ppt

Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS)
MDL = 40 ppt

Date

Result

Result

9/18/2013

< 20

ppt

< 40

ppt

12/11/2013

< 20

ppt

< 40

ppt

3/10/2014

< 20

ppt

< 40

ppt

6/9/2014

< 20

ppt

< 40

ppt

MDL = method detection limit

ppt = parts per trillion

As always, residents with any water quality questions are encouraged to call our Water Treatment Plant at 847.433.4355.


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