Local News

Fairchild to conduct phase 3 of groundwater sampling

FAIRCHILD AIR FORCE BASE, Wash. - Fairchild Air Force Base will continue to sample off-base wells for elevated levels of PFOS and PFOA to the north and south of the base, beginning on Monday.

Approximately 50 residential wells will be tested. Sampling is estimated to continue through next week.

This new round of sampling comes after four out of seven northern border wells on base were found to have levels above the EPA health advisory.

“We are working closely with our partners in Airways Heights to navigate this complex issue together,” said Marc Connally, remedial project manager of the Air Force Civil Engineer Center at Fairchild. “We make our decisions about areas to sample based upon three criteria: probability the Air Force mission was a source of contamination, our proximity to drinking water sources, and if there is a pathway between our installation and the water supply.”

The preliminary results will take about 45 days to return to officials, and then individual residents will be notified of their results. The validated results will come about a month after that, and will be mailed to impacted residents.

Phase 1 of sampling included 23 private wells. 17 were above EPA levels, one was below, and 5 did not have any trace of the chemicals.

Phase 2 included four municipal wells, two monitoring wells, and 28 residential wells. Two municipal wells in Airway Heights and three residential wells were above EPA levels. Five residential wells had detectable levels. The rest did not have any detectable levels.