PFAS (per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances) Information

The Plainville Water System has levels of PFAS6 Above the Drinking Water Standard.
This report contains important information about your drinking water. 
Please translate it or speak with someone who understands it or ask the contact listed below for a translation.

What happened?

The Plainville Water System is providing this PUBLIC NOTICE because drinking water we receive daily from the North Attleborough water system continues to violate a newly promulgated drinking water standard for the sum of six per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances called PFAS6. The following corrective actions are being taken: North Attleboro is currently working with design engineers on an expedited project to design, permit, and install the new granular activated carbon (GAC) treatment facility. While actions are being implemented to lower the level of PFAS6 in the drinking water, water that complies with the drinking water standard is being made available free of charge at a self-service water filling station located at the DPW office, 49 Whiting Street. See North Attleborough Water System Public Notice here:

What does this mean?

This is not an emergency. If it had been, you would have been notified within 24 hours. Although this is not an emergency, as our customer, you have a right to know what happened, what you should do, and what we are doing to       correct this situation.

On October 2, 2020, Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) promulgated a new drinking water regulation and maximum contaminant level (MCL) of 20 nanograms per liter (ng/L or parts per trillion – ppt) for PFAS6.  See the latest results in the table below.

Plainville Water System PFAS6 Results

LocationMonitoring PeriodSample Collection DatePFAS6 Result (ng/L)PFAS6 MCL (ng/L)
North Attleboro McKeon Treatment FacilityQuarter 3, 20237/13/23 - 21.9
8/3/23 - 25.8
9/20/23 - 27.7
Quarterly Average
Turnpike Wells Plainville SourcesQuarter 3, 20237/13/237.4320

***Results were rejected due to Quality Control Criteria associated with the lab analysis not being met.
ND = Non Detect for PFAS6

PFAS6 Testing Results From the Third Quarter of 2023 (PDF)

Recent PFAS6 results for samples collected from the interconnection/entry point locations where the North Attleborough water enters the Plainville Public Water System at Kelly Boulevard were above the MCL; however, the Everett Street entry point result was below the MCL at the time the sample was collected. Because the North Attleboro Water Department results are above the MCL at the McKeon Water Treatment Facility, we must provide you with this Public Notice. Additionally, we are required to sample our own sources and the results from the Turnpike Wells are below the MCL.  

Some people who drink water containing these PFAS in excess of the MCL may experience certain adverse effects. These could include effects on the liver, blood, immune system, thyroid, and fetal development.  These PFAS may also elevate the risk of certain cancers. For more information on PFAS6, see the links listed below.

What is PFAS6?

PFAS6 includes perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS), perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA), perfluorohexanesulfonic acid (PFHxS), perfluorodecanoic acid (PFDA) and perfluoroheptanoic acid (PFHpA).  PFAS are man-made chemicals that have been used in the manufacturing of certain fire-fighting foams, moisture and stain resistant products, and other industrial processes. For more information, see the links listed below.

What do I need to do?

  • Consumers in a sensitive subgroup (pregnant or nursing women, infants and people diagnosed by their health care provider to have a compromised immune system), are advised not to consume, drink, or cook with water when the level of PFAS6 is above 20 ng/L.
  • Consumers in sensitive subgroups are advised to use bottled water for drinking and cooking of foods that absorb water (like pasta). 
  • For infant formula, use bottled water or use formula that does not require adding water.
  • For older children and adults not in a sensitive subgroup, the 20 ng/L value is applicable to a lifetime of consuming the water.  For these groups, shorter duration exposures present less risk.  However, if you are concerned about your exposure while steps are being taken to assess and lower the PFAS concentration in the drinking water, use of bottled water will reduce your exposure.
  • Bottled water should only be used if it has been tested. The Massachusetts Department of Public Health requires companies licensed to sell or distribute bottled water or carbonated non-alcoholic beverages to test for PFAS.  See
  • Home water treatment systems that are certified to remove PFAS by an independent testing group such as NSF, UL, or Water Quality Association may be used to treat the water. These may include point of entry systems, which treat all the water entering a home, or point of use devices, which treat water where it is used, such as at a faucet. For information on selecting home treatment devices that are effective in treating the water for PFAS6, review the MassDEP factsheet for consumers referenced below.
  • In most situations the water can be safely used for washing foods, brushing teeth, bathing, and showering.  
  • Boiling the water will not destroy PFAS6 and will somewhat increase its level due to evaporation of some of the water. 
  • If you have specific health concerns regarding exposure, you should see the Centers for Disease Control’s link below and consult a health professional, such as your doctor. 

What is being done?

The Plainville Water System has taken the following measures to assess and lower the PFAS concentration in the drinking water:

  • The North Attleborough Water Department is investigating long-term water treatment options and is currently considering the installation of a new, permanent granular activated carbon (GAC) PFAS treatment facility at this location.
  • Alternative Water that complies with the drinking water standard is being made available free of charge at a self-service water filling station located at 49 Whiting Street, North Attleborough, DPW Office. Sensitive subgroups include pregnant, or nursing women, infants, and people diagnosed by their health care provider to have a compromised immune system. For updates on accessing alternative water, please visit our website at
  • We have provided information about PFAS in our 2021 Water Quality Report
  • We added information on PFAS to the Public Works section of our website at:
  • Our other active drinking water sources do not currently contain PFAS6 concentrations above the MCL. We will continue to sample all our active drinking water sources for PFAS.
  • When additional information becomes available, this Public Notice will be updated. 

Where can I get more information?

For more information, please contact:

Plainville Water Operations Center

171 East Bacon Street
Plainville, MA 02762
P: (508) 695-6871
Hours of Operation:
Mon. – Fri.   8:00 AM to 4:00 PM, 


For more information on PFAS6 and information on home water treatment, see the links below.

 This Public Notice is being sent to you by the Plainville Water System ID#: 4238000

Date distributed February  20, 2023

We will provide public notice updates every three months until the situation has been resolved.

Please share this information with all the other people who drink this water, especially those who may not have received this notice directly (for example, people in apartments, nursing homes, schools, and businesses).  You can do this by posting this notice in a public place or distributing copies by hand or mail.

Rev. 2021-03