DEC in Hoosick Falls Offering Free Blood Testing For Those Dealing With Water Contamination

HOOSICK FALLS, N.Y. -- The DEC and Department of Health commissioners are on hand in the village of Hoosick Falls to talk to residents about the contamination clean up.

"Right now, personally, I'm just scared for my own life," said Jackie Marozas, a former Hoosick Falls resident.

Less than two weeks ago, Marozas was diagnosed with two forms of cancer.

"I have thyroid cancer and a very aggressive form of breast cancer," she explained.

Marozas said it's her belief that the illnesses are the result of PFOA contaminated water in Hoosick Falls, her childhood home of nearly 40 years. Saturday, she returned to the village for the first day of state-funded blood testing to check for levels of the cancer causing chemical.

"There's national numbers out there, a background amount of PFOA that a lot of people have, so we'll compare that to the samples we're doing here," said New York State Department of Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker.

State officials were on-hand to answer questions from residents, number one being 'can I get rid of this from my system?'

"Over a period of time, it usually takes a couple of years, it takes a little time to get out of your body, but it will," Zucker explained.

As part of the investigation, Governor Cuomo announced that the state will be looking for a permanent source of clean drinking water.

"It might be an alternate water supply, surface water supply, it might be clean ground water, it could be enhanced filtration, it could be a combination of all of those," said New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Acting Commissioner Basil Seggos.

In the meantime, the state is buying and installing water filtration systems for about 1,500 homes using $10 million from the Superfund.

"It enables us to move quickly, we don't need to wait, we're here doing this investigation and were putting the people of Hoosick Falls at ease that we will be able to provide water within a short time frame," Seggos said.

"I hope that there's not going to be people that end up being sick like me because this is not going to be a fun road for me," said Marozas.

People who want to make a blood testing appointment can call 800-801-8092, email BEOE at health.ny.gov, or head to the Department of Health's website.

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