8 Westhampton wells contaminated with chemicals

The county tested a total of 41 water wells in the area.

The county tested a total of 41 water wells in the area. (8/5/16)

WESTHAMPTON - Suffolk County has found eight private water wells in Westhampton to be contaminated with chemicals.

Suffolk County's Health Commissioner Dr. James Tomarken says chemicals that were used in airport firefighting exercises were found in eight of the 41 private water wells they've tested. Five of them are above the EPA's advisory level.

Officials say they are focused on the area south of Gabreski Airport.

Dr. Tomarken and other officials believe the chemicals came from the 106th Air Rescue Wing of the Air National Guard based at the airport. They are urging the Air Force to fix the problem.

"I'm hoping we'll get a favorable response because this is not just happening in Suffolk County...The military is looking at this throughout the country," says Dr. Tomarken.

The Air Force says if it is found that the contaminants came from the base, they will work with the county and state to provide alternative water sources to affected homes.

The county is recommending everyone with private wells to switch to the public water system.

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