The use of firefighting foams by Michigan’s Fire Departments are a growing concern statewide, due to the potential for toxic chemicals to enter the groundwater.

The Battle Creek Fire Department’s new Chief Brian Sturdivant tells 95.3 WBCK that “we have in the past” used foams containing per and polyfleuroalkyl substances, or PFAS.

Sturdivant says that they are currently working to transition away from these foams to a more environmentally friendly option; he says he knows that the city of Battle Creek is in talks with a vendor, and once officials are done "tying the ribbon" on the deal the BCFD can begin decommissioning the PFAS containing foam.

PFAS are man-made chemicals that have been linked to numerous health problems in humans when ingested. One source of potential contamination is when these firefighting foams enter the groundwater, which is what is believed to have led to high PFAS levels in homes near the Battle Creek Air National Guard Base.