Evidence of Toxins Found at Superfund Site in Pueblo

Sep 10, 2015

Results of bloodwork and soil testing done in the area of the former Colorado Smelter Superfund site in Pueblo were released this week. KRCC's Shanna Lewis reports that evidence of toxins was found.
 

135 people considered most at risk for exposure to lead had their blood drawn two years ago. Seven children were found to have elevated levels.  The report notes that even low levels of lead could cause serious health problems in children.

David Dorian is the regional representative for the Agency for Toxic Substance and Disease Registry (ATSDR), the federal agency that conducted the September 2013 tests.  He acknowledges the timing may have affected the results, as children play outdoors more in the summer.

"Blood lead has a half life of roughly 60 days," says Dorian.  "So ideally, we would have been there about a month earlier and it might have given us some slightly higher results but we just don’t know that."

Elevated levels of arsenic were not found in urine samples.

Meanwhile, pilot soil sampling done at 12 properties in the area showed half with high levels of lead and mid range levels in the others.

Two public meetings about the blood testing results will be held on September 24 in Pueblo:

Mary’s Church
307 East Mesa Ave. Pueblo, CO
11:00 a. m. to 2:00 p. m.

and

Rawlings Public Library
100 E. Abriendo Ave. Pueblo, CO. 81004
Room: Rawlings Ryals Special Events Room
5:00 to 8:30 p. m.

You can view a fact sheet from the ATSDR about the lead and arsenic testing here [.pdf].
You can read the full report from the ATSDR here [.pdf].