PORTSMOUTH, N.H. — Officials at an Air National Guard base in New Hampshire announced that the Air Force will conduct a study amid concerns about exposure to carcinogens at the base.

The occupation health study will take place at the Pease Air National Guard Base and will be conducted with assistance from the Air National Guard surgeon general, the Portsmouth Herald reported Sunday.

The study will examine personnel records of service members that were assigned to the base between January 1970 and December 2019 in order to determine if there was a higher incidence of cancer among those who were assigned to the guard base and the former Pease Air Force base.

The announcement of the study comes after concerns were raised by a group of widows of men who served at the bases.

Officials closed a well at the base in 2014 because of high levels of perfluorooctanoic acid, or PFOA. Exposure to high levels of the toxic chemical is linked to some forms of cancer.

The women believe people who worked at the base suffered an usually high number of cancer and other health ailments.

Col. John Pogorek, commander of the 157th Air Refueling Wing, said the study is “a defining step toward addressing the health concerns of the men and women who have worked on Pease Air Force Base and Pease Air National Guard Base.”

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