Chemours quadruples number of wells being tested for GenX

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (WNCN) — The state confirmed Chemours has quadrupled the number of wells it’s testing.

That brings the total number to more than 400 wells being tested for the chemical GenX.

“Bottled water, we have bottles all over the house,” Ann Marie Swilley, a Fayetteville homeowner said.

It’s the new reality for her and her family. They use that bottled water to drink, cook and brush their teeth.

“Single bottles, and then they offer us the one gallon,” Swilley said.

“Our water comes entirely from our well, and we understand that it’s been contaminated,” she went on to explain.

For Swilley and at least 34 other homeowners it started about two months ago. Chemours tested about a hundred wells in a one mile radius of its Bladen County plant. Late Wednesday afternoon, the state said it had expanded that two miles.

The state also told CBS North Carolina it was looking into long-term solutions.

The first option would involve extending municipal water lines to the area. The state also looking into installing water filters at people’s homes. The Bladen County Manager said Chemours is heading that up, looking for products that would filter out GenX. The third possibility would be to make existing wells deeper. Under the working theory of how GenX is spread, that would cut down on how much of that chemical is making it into the well water.

The state couldn’t comment on who would foot the bill for the fix. They called the bottled water, a temporary solution.

“It costs millions to run water a very little ways,” Vice Chairman Ray Britt of the Bladen County Board of Commissioners said.

Britt acknowledged it’s a tough balancing act, explaining Chemours employs more than 500 people in his county.

To those commissioners, the state and Chemours, Swilley had this to say, “I would just like to not be a number and I would like to be somebody that they consider to be a human being that could be in harm’s way.”

CBS North Carolina continues to reach out to Chemours for comment; we still haven’t heard back.

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