“LANSING — The state fire marshal wants Michigan fire departments to report their use and disposal of a chemical-laden firefighting foam that has contaminated state groundwater.

The Michigan PFAS Action Response Team (MPART) announced the survey effort on Wednesday, March 28.

State Fire Marshal Kevin Sehlmeyer wants to know how much Aqueous Film Forming Foam (AFFF) is, or was, in use around the state and develop a strategy for its disposal, the state says.

The foam is known to contaminate groundwater with per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances called PFAS or PFCs. The chemistry, invented by 3M, is the chemical backbone for AFFF foam…

‘The feedback we receive from our fire departments will be critical as MPART continues to develop detailed protocols to address this critical issue,’ said Sehlmeyer.

‘I encourage everyone in the fire service community to participate in the survey and provide their best practices on the safe disposal of firefighting foam containing PFAS.’

Sehlmeyer plans to survey more than 1,000 fire departments across Michigan to see how much PFAS-laden foam is still being used and how fire departments are handling foam runoff. The foam was widely used at military bases and airports as a means to quash jet fuel fires.

Foam-related PFAS plumes have contaminated drinking water supplies near the former Wurtsmith Air Force Base in Oscoda, the former K.I. Sawyer Air Force Base near Marquette and the Camp Grayling Michigan National Guard base.

There are 15 communities in Michigan with known PFAS plumes. At least eight of them are attributable to firefighting foam.

In Kent County, PFAS has already shown-up in hundreds of private wells and the municipal systems in Plainfield Township and Sparta.”

Read the full article by John Tunison.