GRANITE CITY, Ill. (AP) -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency wants to test more properties near an old Granite City lead smelter and battery recycling plant for possible soil contamination.
The agency says it'll send letters this month to property owners near the former NL Industries site asking for permission to sample.
A lead smelter and refining plant operated about two miles east of St. Louis from 1903 to 1983, and contamination spread through parts of Granite City, Madison and Venice.
About 1,600 properties were cleaned up from 1993 to 2000. But the EPA says it's focusing on about 80 property owners who wouldn't allow testing or cleanup at the time.
Lead poisoning is especially harmful to young children and can lead to learning and behavior problems.