City of Westfield files lawsuit against firefighting foam manufacturers


WESTFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The City of Westfield has filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court against three manufacturers of aqueous film forming foam, known as firefighting foam, used by Barnes Air National Guard Base and Westfield-Barnes Regional Airport.

The companies named in the suit are 3M Company, Chemguard, Inc. and Tyco Fire Products L.P.

Water contamination concerns continue in Westfield

The foam is used to extinguish jet fuel fires. Flourinated surfacants, the chemicals found in the foam, have been identified by the U.S. EPA as a health hazard. Water from two Westfield water wells near Barnes ANG Base were found to have been contaminated with the chemicals and exceeded the federal advisory levels.  The wells have not been in service since December 2015.

Westfield Mayor Brian L. Sullivan issued a news release with details of the complaint. The city contends that the “manufacturers knew or should have known that the chemicals are persistent when released into the environment and harmful.” The city also states that they have incurred “substantial expense to provide clean, safe drinking water to its residents.”

Air National Guard site investigation underway for water contaminants

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