Town of New Windsor sues over PFAS-contaminated water

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Photo: Lance Cpl. Shawn Valosin/U.S. Marine Corps.

NEW WINDSOR – The Town of New Windsor has filed a lawsuit in White Plains federal court charging the U.S. government, State of New York, and 26 other defendants seeking the cleanup of PFAS chemicals that have contaminated the water sources in the Butterhill and Kroll housing neighborhoods wells.

The contamination comes from firefighting foam at the Stewart Air National Guard Base, the same chemical that contaminated the City of Newburgh’s Washington Lake water supply.

The New Windsor suit contends the defendants knew of the risks PFAS posed to people’s health and the environment but did nothing to warn users of those dangers, including the likelihood of groundwater and drinking water contamination.

When the contamination was discovered in 2019, the town was forced to shut down the Butterhill wells treatment plant for a time and has not been able to draw water from the wells at their full rated capacity since then.

After the discovery, the state installed a partial, temporary granular active carbon filtration system, but that system only allows one-third of the wells’ capacity. And the suit maintains the state has refused to provide a full-sized, permanent granular active carbon filtration system for New Windsor’s Butterhill wells, as it did for the city of Newburgh after its water source was found contaminated.