WORRIED: Bundaberg LPG Conversion Centre owner Darren Benko is concerned about the high levels of PFAS in the water.
WORRIED: Bundaberg LPG Conversion Centre owner Darren Benko is concerned about the high levels of PFAS in the water. Mike Knott BUN020518CONCERNED1

PFAS: Business owner concerned for health of family, staff

AS AUTHORITIES start doorknocking to find the source of the PFAS contamination the community eagerly awaits answers.

The doorknock was believed to have started in the industrial area close to the Dr Mays Rd bore that feeds Svensson Heights residents town water.

The Bundaberg Regional Council advised the community the bore was contaminated with the PFAS chemical on April 13 and the supply from that bore stopped on April 12.

Bundaberg LPG Conversion Centre owner Darren Benko told the NewsMail he was concerned about the health effects not only because of his business but because his family lived in the Svensson Heights area.

"We work and wash our hands and arms all the time in this water," he said.

"The girls drink the tea and coffee."

Mr Benko said he was very concerned about contamination and had a personal experience with the chemical.

"My mother's husband is ex-military and they used it in their air force," Mr Benko said.

"He has cancer all through him and it's (the PFAS) what they detected it back to.

"It may not happen to us in the next 20 years but it'll hit us when we want to retire.

"And who will compensate us for it?"

Mr Benko said besides the NewsMail no one else had approached the business regarding the water contamination.

The NewsMail approached several other businesses along Enterprise St.

Some said they weren't concerned and others said they knew little about PFAS.

But none had been door knocked as of lunchtime yesterday.

Mr Benko said a number of the businesses backed onto the water course which was Saltwater Creek.

But he was not sure where the contamination would have come from.

"We just want answers," Mr Benko said.

"They don't know how long the water has been contaminated.

"I am concerned about my employees and family."

The Enterprise St business owner has lived in the area for 25 years and said he didn't realise the water came from a bore and thought it was from an upper water stream supply.

"If the authorities do come knocking I will tell them my concerns," he said.

"It's really not acceptable, that's for sure.

"We are supposed to be the lucky country and now we have this with no answers."

The NewsMail contacted

 

the Department of Environment and Science and asked how the investigation was proceeding.

"Our investigations are still ongoing and we hope to release a statement on the matter when information is available," a spokesman said.



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