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DPH warns public not to drink bottled water from Mass. company due to PFAS contamination

The Department of Public Health is warning the public not to drink bottled water from a Massachusetts company due to PFAS contamination.

In a public health advisory issued Wednesday, officials advised consumers not to purchase or consume bottled water or fill containers from self-serve water vending machines operated or distributed by Simpson Spring Company in Easton.

“It’s been difficult, yeah,” said Dan Bartarelli with Simpson Spring.

Testing revealed that per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances in the company’s water exceeded drinking water standards, according to the DPH.

“Consumers are urged not to consume any Simpson Spring products until further notice,” the warning stated.

Anyone who has Simpson Spring water in their home or establishment is asked to adhere to the following:

  • Do not consume the product.

  • Pour the water down a drain and recycle any plastic receptacle.

  • Do not buy or consume new products from Simpson Spring until further notice.

PFAS are a group of manufactured chemicals used in industry and consumer products since the 1940s. Current scientific research suggests that exposure to certain PFAS may lead to adverse health outcomes.

Since 2021, the DPH says it has conducted surveillance sampling and testing for emerging contaminants, including PFAS, in bottled water as part of its surveillance program.

The DPH’s Food Protection Program collected water samples from Simpson Spring’s Easton facility on February 21, 2024, and collected confirmatory samples on March 11. Test results found that samples exceeded the Massachusetts drinking water standard for PFAS.

On March 1, Simpson Spring advised DPH that it would voluntarily cease bottling operations temporarily and disconnect its vending machines until the issue is resolved. The DPH also noted that sanitary violations were documented during the inspections, and a cease-and-desist order was issued.

“We will do everything we can to get this problem solved and we’ll continue to bottle the best water we can,” said Bartarelli.

The DPH says it will continue to monitor the situation and work with Simpson Spring to correct the violations.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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