Investigation of chemicals around Williamtown
NSW Environment Protection Authority advises:
The NSW Government has been made aware by the Department of Defence that legacy fire-fighting chemicals have been found in some surface water, groundwaters and in small numbers of fish around the Williamtown RAAF Base and Newcastle Airport.
While at this stage any risk to human health appears to be low, the NSW Government is taking a precautionary approach to this preliminary advice and is working with the Department of Defence to determine the extent and potential impact of these offsite chemicals.
The NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) is working with the Department of Defence as well as NSW Health, the Department of Primary Industries, NSW Food Authority and Hunter Water to assess and confirm the nature of any potential risk of the contamination and to develop an appropriate response.
In keeping with this precautionary approach the NSW Government is advising potentially impacted residents to -
- not drink bore water
- not eat fish caught in the nearby area
- not eat eggs from backyard chickens that have been drinking bore water in the area.
Area of interest
Click for EPA's map detail (pdf, 583KB).
For more information:
- EPA page: Williamtown RAAF Base contamination
- call EPAs Environment Line: 131 555
- on DPI response & advice, see DPI Williamtown information page
- on specific health inquiries, call NSW Health: 1300 066 055
- on chemicals PFOS & PFOA, see NSW Health factcheet: Williamtown RAAF Site Contamination updated 10 September 2015