2004.09.27 – ACTIVISTS REFUTE STATE HEALTH DEPT. STUDY

ACTIVISTS REFUTE STATE HEALTH DEPT. STUDY
The Times News, © 2004

September 27, 2004

GINTHER, Pa. (AP)  The Pennsylvania Department of Health said a study of nine communities in northeastern Schuylkill County and northwestern Carbon County shows no evidence of a link between cancer cases and environmental contamination.

Activists had called for the study after three cases of extremely rare cancer were identified along Ben Titus Road in Rush Township near a former Superfund site. “The types of cancer in the area and the rates observed (do) not support the suggestion that environmental contamination contributes to the cancer rates,” wrote Michelle S. Davis, a deputy secretary, in a review of the department’s findings.

A group called Carbon County Groundwater Guardians said three people, including a married couple, were diagnosed with a rare bone marrow disease and a fourth is undergoing evaluation.

All three live near the former McAdoo Associates Superfund site where, between 1978 and 1979, nearly 7,000 drums and six above-ground tanks contained volatile organic compounds, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Groundwater Guardians said it doubts the findings of the Health Department study.

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