Residents near Luke AFB offered bottled water after chemicals detected

Tests for contaminated water will continue within a 1-mile radius of Luke Air Force Base. The Air Force plans to have a filtration system up and running in April. (File photo by Nicole Neri/Cronkite News)

By Nicholas Gerbis/KJZZ | Cronkite News

The Air Force is providing bottled water to some homeowners and businesses east of Luke Air Force Base in response to groundwater contaminated with potentially harmful substances used to fight fires.

Sampling by the Air Force Civil Engineer Center and Valley Utilities Water Co. showed potentially harmful levels of perfluorooctanoic acid and perfluorooctane sulfonate in local drinking water.

The substances help create protective coatings, useful in such items as stain-resistant carpet, nonstick cookware and a foam to fight fuel fires.

Scientists call them “forever chemicals” because they linger in the environment and build up in humans, fish and wildlife.

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