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Cancer concern: Wildwood leaders consider polluted property study

11:11 PM, Mar 8, 2010   |    comments
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By Mike Garrity

KSDK -- A new study found toxins including Dioxin all over land where the construction of new homes had been approved in Wildwood.

In 2008, the City of Wildwood decided to spend more than $400,000 to investigate the safety of 18 acres of land just off the 100 block of Strecker Road.

Now the results are in.

Monday night a city-hired environmental consultant told Wildwood's City council his team found Dioxin and other poisonous chemicals in soil and water on sections of property next to where truck driver Russell Bliss used to live, and where Bliss poured tons of liquid chemicals into the ground.

"We found Dioxin everywhere. We found it in every sample. It was ubiquitous," Dr. John Mundell told the council at one point.

Years ago the federal government worked to clean up Bliss' pollution.

But these days Mundell says levels of Dioxin found on the property are unacceptable as far as modern environmental safety standards are concerned.

The area, he says, was only cleaned up to meet now dated E.P.A. standards.

Monday night city leaders listened, asked questions, but took no action.

However they did take in a laundry list of recommendations.

Everything from cleaning up parts of the site, to adding signage and fencing, to getting federal and state government agencies involved.

The land was only studied after a mother named Kelly Kramer, who used to live in a neighborhood next to the property, pled with the city to investigate before it allowed homes to be built.

Kramer says her now 25-year-old son developed cancer along with four of his now deceased friends who all used to play on the property.

City leaders say they will now be talking about their next move.

But right now the developer whose plans for the property have been put on hold has taken legal action against the city.

So an April court hearing could be the first we learn of the city's next move.

View: Phase Two Environmental Site Assessment Report
View: Missouri Registry Annual Report 2009

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