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School receives bottled water amid tests for hazardous chemicals

October 12, 2017
| By AP |
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Officials are shutting off drinking fountains and providing bottled water at a middle school in the area, as they test water for possible hazardous chemicals from a decades-old tannery waste dump site nearby.

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality announced precautionary measures Thursday at East Rockford Middle School.

The agency said there's no evidence of contamination in the Rockford school's drinking water, but precautions will be taken until test results come back within about two weeks.

Wolverine Worldwide used chemicals at its former tannery in Rockford to waterproof leather for making Hush Puppies shoes. Dump sites have turned up in the area, with contamination including per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS.

State toxicologists said exposure to PFAS has been linked to cancer and other health issues.

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