State Official Backs Decision To Shut Down Rhinelander Well#8

Dec 3, 2019

One of Rhinelander's wells.
Credit Ben Meyer WXPR

The State Division of Health has backed a decision by Rhinelander Mayor Chris Frederickson to shut down city well #8 after a contaminant topped federal recommended levels.

The city shut down city well 7 this past summer after chemicals in the PFAS family were detected at elevated levels. Well 8 has readings in excess of 90 parts per trillion (ppt) of PFHxS, a lesser-known chemical in the PFAS family.

It’s the same chemical – in roughly the same concentration – that led the Oneida County Health Department to declare a nearby artesian well “Do Not Drink” in August.

In a letter dated November 27, Department of Health Services toxicologist Dr. Clara Jeong, supported the city's decision to shut down the well to protect public health from PFHxS exposure until this issue can be further resolved. Additionally, DHS recommends continued monitoring when PFAS are detected in water even if levels of PFOA and PFOS are below the recommended groundwater standards of 20 parts per million.

We have a link to the state Department of Health Services website about PFAS at here.