Air Force sent wastewater into sewers up to 3 times a year

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) -- The Air Force says a base near Colorado Springs sent water laced with toxic firefighting foam into the city's sewer system as often as three times a year.

Air Force officials tell The Gazette that Peterson Air Force Base stopped sending firefighting foam wastewater into sewers last year, but criminal investigators are looking into the recent discharge of 150,000 gallons of chemical-laden water from the base.

The foam is suspected of contaminating the Widefield Aquifer, rendering well water for customers in Security, Widefield and Fountain unsafe to drink.

The Air Force contends its earlier discharges of contaminated wastewater were in accordance with the city's utilities guidelines, which Colorado Springs Utilities disputes.

The foam contains perfluorinated compounds, or PFCs, which have been linked to prostate, kidney and testicular cancer.

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