Four more homes near the West Lake Landfill have tested positive for radioactive material. Credit: KMOV
BRIDGETON (KMOV.com) -
Attorneys representing a Bridgeton couple that sued after radioactive waste was found in their home recently announced that tests found the same material in four more homes.
Attorney Winston Calvert told News 4, "Unfortunately we have been finding more and more homes that have radioactive contamination above the background levels."
Michael and Robbin Dailey filed suit last November after tests found radioactive waste in their home in the 3500 block of El Ferrol Court in the Spanish Village subdivision. They said tests showed it was the same material that had been illegally dumped in West Lake Landfill in the 1970's.
Since then, other homeowners have asked the attorneys representing the Daileys to test their homes. According to Calvert, three homes on San Sevilla Court were found to have elevated levels of radiation from radioactive isotopes connected to the landfill along with one home on the same street where the Daily's live.
"I felt sorry for that homeowner but I was not surprised, because it would be absolutely miraculous that it only landed on my house, in my yard," said Robbin Dailey.
It's speculated that radioactive waste may have been blown offsite when the material was dumped at West Lake Landfill and moved around by workers.
In the wake of the announcement about the Dailey's lawsuit, the EPA tested two homes in the neighborhood.
EPA spokesman Ben Washburn released a statement saying, "EPA’s review of the preliminary results does not indicate a cause for concern or any need for immediate action in these two homes, and the final report will address how the agency reached its conclusions."
Dawn Chapman with the landfill advocacy group called Just Moms says the EPA has mismanaged West Lake Landfill and that the latest test result prove the landfill poses a risk, and that people living near it should be offered a buyout.
"I think it does for many of those people who want a buyout, I think they should get what they need. If they want to be bought out, let them go, let them leave," said Chapman.
Russ Knocke, Vice-President for communications and Public Affairs for landfill owner, Republic Services disputes that perspective.
Knocke said, "All of the neutral expert evaluations by EPA, CDC/ATSDR and MDHSS say the community is safe and there is nothing here that rebuts those findings."
Calvert said results of testing at more homes are expected to be released soon.
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