According to a CBC story, “National Research Council employees at the fire-safety testing facility in Mississippi Mills were told to start drinking bottled water in January 2014, almost two years before neighbours were told about groundwater contaminated with toxic chemicals.”
As reported earlier in the Millstone, the NRC began delivering bottled water to some homes in Mississippi Mills this March after “slightly above normal” levels of so-called perfluoroalkylated substances, or PFAS, were found in one home’s water.
The CBC story says, “according to documents released under the Access to Information Act, workers were told in an email from the facility manager dated Jan. 14, 2014 that ‘faucet water at the Fire Lab U- 96 is not to be consumed for drinking purposes.'”
The CBC doesn’t say whether the NRC’s concern about the lab’s faucet water was directly related to PFAS detected near the lab.
According to Health Canada, PFAS are used in various industrial products, including fire-fighting foam. Although little testing has been done of their impact on human health, in animals “high levels have been linked with negative health effects… including liver damage and impacts on neurological development.”