Suffolk County health officials have expanded an ongoing survey of water quality in private wells near the East Hampton Airport to include another well in Wainscott.
The expansion comes after testers detected perfluorinated compounds in a private well in the current survey area, officials at the Suffolk County Department of Health Services said Friday in a news release.
It is the latest development in a series of expansions in the survey area since county health officials announced in October that they planned to survey private wells on 91 Wainscott properties for the compounds, known as perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS.
The survey was launched after one well yielded contamination levels that officials said exceeded the federal health advisory level of 0.07 parts per billion. The survey has since expanded to include hundreds of properties.
“PFAS have been used in a number of industrial and commercial products such firefighting foam, as well as coatings that repel water, oil, stains and grease,” officials said. “People may be exposed . . . through air, water, or soil from industrial sources and from consumer products.”
The populations most vulnerable to exposure, officials said, are fetuses and breastfed babies.
The expanded area includes those properties near a private well in the area bordered by Merchants Path to the north, Wainscott Harbor Road continuing on to Wainscott Hollow Road on the west, the ocean to the south and extending to Georgica Pond to the east, officials said.
Health department officials said they will contact people in area, though residents may choose to call the Office of Water Resources at 631-852-5810 to have their wells tested free of charge.
Residents are encouraged to drink bottled water until the testing is completed. Free water is being distributed by the Town of East Hampton Purchasing Department to residents in the survey area. The agency can be contacted at 631-324-4183 or JCarroza@EHamptonNY.gov.