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In October 2020, the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) promulgated a new drinking water regulation and maximum contaminant level (MCL) of 20 nanograms per liter (ng/L) – also referred to as parts per trillion (ppt) for the sum of six per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (called PFAS6).
PFAS6 includes perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS), perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA), perfluorohexanesulfonic acid (PFHxS), perfluorodecanoic acid (PFDA) and perfluoroheptanoic acid (PFHpA). PFAS are synthetic chemicals that have been used in the manufacturing of certain fire-fighting foams, moisture and stain resistant products, industrial processes, and many other consumer products.
Recently, the Westford Water Department (Water Department) identified an elevated level of PFAS6 in the drinking water during routine (monthly) monitoring at the Forge Village Water Treatment Plant (WTP). The level detected was 20.6 ppt and the MassDEP Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL) is 20 ppt. Even though the level is above the MCL, a PFAS6 MCL violation has not occurred, as violations are based on three months of testing. Please click on PFAS Public Education for additional information.
We are providing this information to make our customers aware of the elevated level so they can make informed decisions about their drinking water while we continue to monitor the water supply.