Cheri Burness’ dog was the first to signal something was wrong with their tap water. He stopped drinking it two weeks ago. Then Burness started feeling stomach cramps. Her 12-year-old daughter was nauseous.
“It was just getting worse every day,” said Burness, whose husband is in the Navy.
Their family is among hundreds of military families living near Pearl Harbor with similar complaints after the Navy’s water system somehow became contaminated by petroleum.
The problems have afflicted one of the most important Navy bases in the world, home to submarines, ships and the commander of U.S. forces in the Indo-Pacific region. The issues may even threaten one of Honolulu’s most important aquifers and water sources.
The Navy said Thursday that tests had identified petroleum in its Red Hill well which taps into an aquifer near the base. Rear Adm. Blake Converse, Pacific Fleet deputy commander, told a town hall meeting the Navy took this well offline on Sunday because it was the closest well to affected housing areas.
Converse said the Navy will flush clean water through its distribution system to clear residual petroleum products from the water. The process, followed by testing to make sure it the water meets Environmental Protection Agency drinking standards, could take four to ten days, he said.
The Navy will also investigate how contaminants got into the well and fix it, he said.
The crisis came after the Navy on Nov. 22 said a water and fuel mixture had leaked into a fire suppression system drain line in a tunnel at a massive fuel storage facility 3 miles inland of Pearl Harbor. The Navy said it removed about 14,000 gallons of the mixture, and said the liquid hadn’t leaked into the environment.-
Learn More: https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/pearl-harbor-military-families-on-edge-after-fuel-found-in-tap-water/ar-AARr65a
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