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'Do Not Drink' water advisory issued for Village of Mayville water customers

NYS, Chautauqua County, and Walmart stores team-up to provide residents with safe drinking water
Posted at 5:01 PM, Dec 10, 2020

VILLAGE OF MAYVILLE, N.Y. (WKBW) — A "Do Not Drink" water advisory has been issued for Village of Mayville water customers.

Officials say perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA) has been detected in Mayville Public Water System wells.

An effort is now underway to provide one case of bottled water per day to Mayville families in a drive-through arrangement at the Town of Chautauqua Highway Department.

The water is being provided without cost to residents by Mayville, New York State, Chautauqua County, and the Walmart stores in Fredonia and Lakewood.

In a statement, officials say the use of water is acceptable for showering, bathing, cleaning, and washing dishes but should NOT be used for drinking, cooking, food preparation, tooth brushing, or animal consumption. They also say boiling your water will NOT remove the chemicals.

Sample results from late Wednesday revealed the presence of PFNA in the village's three wells.

"PFNA is an emerging contaminant with only a limited amount of health data and is not monitored or regulated at the federal or state levels. The developing information about potential health risks from the ingestion of PFNA have led state and local health officials to take the precaution of switching to an alternate drinking water supply. The determination has been made that both interim and long-term measures to reduce exposure to these chemicals are prudent," a release from states.

A town hall about the problem was hosted by the Chautauqua County Health Department Friday, December 11, 2020 and is viewable on the department's Facebook page here.

Bottled and canned water will be available for residents at the Town of Chautauqua DPW Garage at 50 Patterson Street in Mayville as follows:

  • Thursday, December 10 from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
  • Friday, December 11 from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, December 12 from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
  • Sunday, December 13 from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
  • Monday, December 14 from 2:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

The department of health released the following information regarding water pickup:

  • Any persons in Isolation or Quarantine for COVID-19 should NOT leave their homes to pick up water. If there is no one available to bring water to you, please call the Health Department at 716-753-4491.
  • All COVID-19 precautions will be taken at distribution including masking and social distancing.
  • Residents must stay in their vehicles.
  • Water will be limited to one (1) case per household per day.
  • Those unable to pick-up water should call John Buxton with the Village of Mayville at 716-269-4801 to make alternate arrangements.
  • Future water distribution dates and sites are being planned.

Officials say the long-term plan may be to expedite the process of bringing a recently drilled fourth well into service:

"To mitigate the presence of chemicals in the public drinking water supply, which were found to impact the Village of Mayville’s three wells, Village engineers are working with County and State officials and engineers to identify options to provide clean water. Mitigation measures include expediting the process to bring a recently drilled fourth well into service. This new well is located in a different location than the three existing wells impacted by PFNA and as such, these chemicals have not been detected in its ground water source. The fourth well is being evaluated to determine if it has the capability to meet the Village’s water needs.

"The NYS Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH), will simultaneously be investigating the source of contamination and how it can be remediated. However, this is expected to take months or more to determine."