SPOKANE COUNTY, Wash --- Fairchild Air Force base is expanding its testing of drinking water to include about 100 more private wells.
KREM spoke with Bruce Corbett about two weeks ago. His private well water tested almost twice the EPA advisory level for PFOS and PFOA contaminants. His well was tested during the phase three testing.
Phase four testing includes a larger area north of the base. Officials said the new testing area is roughly one mile south of the base and two miles north of Highway 2.
Fairchild Air Force Base Commander Colonel Ryan Samuelson said civil engineers added wells after 21 of 50 wells tested above EPA advisory level during phase three.
"It’s always been the plan to continue to expand testing until we have a full understanding of what kind of issues we have out there with contaminated ground water,” said Samuelson.
When KREM spoke with Corbett he wondered how the contaminants could get into wells north of the base especially since the fire training was done on the southern end of Fairchild.
Fairchild leaders said it is difficult to predict how water above and underground will move.
“That's why throughout the base and the area we are continuing to test wells of various depths and various ages of wells and as we find any area above the detect area then we will continue to expand in that area,” said Samuelson.
As the testing area expands people wanted to know what is going to be done to fix the problem. Officials said solutions could vary. One home may just need a filter system while another home could need a whole new well.
"That's why it's not a one cut resolution for every resident,” said Samuelson.
Air Force leaders said their engineers are working on these different long term solutions.
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