EPA investigates high levels of lead in soil around homes - WSMV Channel 4

EPA investigates high levels of lead in soil around homes

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MOUNT PLEASANT, TN (WSMV) -

Residents in a Mount Pleasant neighborhood are concerned after the Environmental Protection Agency found soil around 12 homes to have unsafe levels of lead. 

The lead had been leaching into the soil for years from a now-closed plant that used heavy metals in the manufacture of insulation.

Forty homes have been tested so far. Twelve homes were found to have unsafe levels of lead in the soil around their properties. Some were as high as three times the safe level.

EPA On-Scene Coordinator Chuck Berry told Channel 4 News residents should use caution until they can clean up any problem areas.

"We are asking that, in the short term, to limit contact with the soil until we get out there and formally take removal action on these properties," said Berry.

One homeowner who spoke to Channel 4 News did not want to be identified by name. Her home tested safe for lead levels. However she says she is leaving the neighborhood.

"I'm getting out of here. I don't believe what they (EPA) is saying. I feel like it's part of my health problems and my children's health problems," said the unidentified woman.

Many longtime resident remember seeing contaminated fibers blowing in the air like snow from the now defunct plant.

Berry told Channel 4 News, the EPA has not contacted many residents in a three square block area that surrounds the plant. If you live in the affected area call the EPA at 404-562-8278.   

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