Test results: Well water safe to drink at Summit school on French Island

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT) — The well water at Summit Environmental School is safe for drinking, according to test results released Monday by the School District of La Crosse.

“In everyday language, it is accurate to say the compounds were barely detectable, and well below the Department of Health Services (DHS) levels recommended for protecting health,” said Principal Dirk Hunter in a message to Summit families and staff members.

The district tested the well for the French Island school out of an abundance of caution after city of La Crosse wells and private wells on the island tested positive for PFAS. Students and staff members were drinking bottled water while waiting for the results of the test. According to the test, of the 18 PFAS tested for, only two were present and both were at barely detectable levels.

PFBS were found at levels of 2.1 ng/L, well below the public health standard of 450,000 ng/L; and PFBA was found at a level of 1.7 ng/L, again below the health standard of 10,000 ng/L.

According to John Storlie of The OS Group, a consultant hired by the city of La Crosse, “Both were detected below the Limit of Quantitation, which means the levels were so low, the lab could not certify the quantity (numeric concentration) ¬†present, but they can confirm the presence of the compounds.”

The district will continue to monitor water quality moving forward.