Senate Bill 217
150th General Assembly (Present)
Laid on table during consideration; awaits further action
AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 16 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO FIREFIGHTING.
This Act limits the use of certain Class B firefighting foams (“Class B foams”) in Delaware. Class B foams are used to put out fires caused by flammable liquids like gasoline, oil, and jet fuel, and can be divided into 2 categories: those with PFAS chemicals and those without. PFAS chemicals include a range of chemistries with differing properties, which have been widely-used for decades in products other than Class B foams, like food packaging, carpets, and other household items, and in firefighting foam. The use of firefighting foams containing PFAS chemicals, however, is an emerging public health challenge to avoid future contamination and reduce exposure to firefighters and Delawareans. Firefighting foam containing PFAS chemicals can get into water wells and drinking water supplies, and expose firefighters and others to the chemicals. More studies into the effects of PFAS chemicals are emerging; some of the health effects of exposure to certain PFAS chemicals include pregnancy complications, liver damage, and high cholesterol. The PFAS chemicals in firefighting foams must be weighed against their particularly-effective nature in fighting liquid fires when mixed with water. To that end, this Act prohibits the use of Class B foams containing intentionally-added PFAS chemicals unless the use is for fire prevention or emergency firefighting. Further, this Act permits the use of such foam for training and testing only if the facility in which the training or testing occurs has implemented containment, treatment, and disposal measures to prevent releases of Class B foams containing PFAS chemicals. This Act also makes technical changes to Part IV of Title 16, to more accurately reflect its current structure.
Takes effect upon being signed into law