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No Significant Health Risks Found in Analysis of Second Round of Soil Sampling Near Soccer Complex in Cameron, Mo.

Release Date: 10/28/2010
Contact Information: Chris Whitley, 913-551-7433, whitley.christopher@epa.gov


Environmental News


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

(Kansas City, Kan., Oct. 28, 2010) - Analysis of lab results from a second round of soil sampling near the Cameron, Mo., Soccer Complex does not indicate significant risks to public health, based on current use conditions of properties in the area, EPA Region 7 has determined.

Elevated levels of arsenic were detected in 44 of 115 soil samples collected from six different properties in this second round of sampling, which occurred during the week of August 23, 2010.

However, EPA noted that the elevated arsenic levels that were found in soil samples collected in August – and in some of the samples collected during an initial round of sampling in March – were in soils situated directly along the path of a former railroad line that once crossed the area.

EPA believes that the geographical pattern of soil samples with elevated arsenic levels is consistent with the railroad industry’s longstanding practice of legally applying arsenic-containing pesticides along rail lines to control weeds and pests.

Based on a study of current use conditions of properties that were sampled near the Soccer Complex, EPA does not believe the elevated arsenic levels pose a significant health risk. As a result, the Agency does not plan to remove or replace soils in the area.

Letters were sent this week to owners of the properties that EPA sampled in March and August, explaining the Agency’s analysis. Owners whose properties were determined to have elevated arsenic levels were further advised against disturbing the soils or covering vegetation on those portions of the properties where the elevated arsenic levels were detected, other than for such activities as routine mowing.

EPA does not presently anticipate any further investigation of soil contamination in the area near the Soccer Park, as current property use there is unlikely to cause significant exposure to the contaminated soils that have been identified.

The Agency became interested in the location, which it refers to as the Ore Stockpile Area, based on citizens’ tips that it had been used many years ago as a site for the off-loading of railroad cars that contained ore and raw materials that were subsequently hauled by truck to the former Rockwool Industries facility in Cameron.

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