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ATSDR Press Room

Federal Agency seeks Public Comments on Jacobsville, IN Soil Contamination Report


Evansville, Indiana

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

ATLANTA— The Jacobsville Neighborhood Soil Contamination (JNSC) site in Evansville, Indiana posed a public health threat in the past due to lead and arsenic levels detected in surface soils and continues to pose a public health threat for residential properties that have not yet been remediated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), concluded the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) on its public health assessment released today.

The report evaluates the potential for lead and arsenic exposure throughout the Jacobsville community. It also provides information on ways to reduce blood lead levels in children and other residents near.

The soil at many residential properties located within the JNSC site are contaminated with arsenic and lead, the result of industrial activities in the area dating back to the 1800s.

EPA listed the JNSC site on the National Priorities List in 2004 and began a Superfund Emergency Removal Action in 2007. At present, more than 1,000 properties have been remediated and EPA cleanup activities are ongoing.

ATSDR recommends that EPA continue remediation at the site and that residents take the following steps to protect themselves from lead and arsenic exposure:

  • Residents, especially children, participate in yearly blood lead screening programs. Programs are offered for free by the Vanderburgh Country Health Department. Programs may also be offered by hospitals or health care providers.
  • Residents, especially children, entering their homes after working or playing in the yard take off their shoes before entering the house, use a damp cloth or mop to remove dirt and dust from their homes, wash their hands, and wash toys and pets.
  • Residents allow EPA access to their property to test the soil for lead and arsenic contamination.
  • Residents with homes built before 1978 follow recommended practices to maintain painted surfaces.
  • Homeowners with homes built before 1978 follow EPA’s Lead Renovation, Repair, and Painting Rule to lower the risk of lead contamination from home renovation activities.
  • Residents living in older homes have their water tested for lead.

To read the public health assessment, visit: http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/hac/pha/HCPHA.asp?State=IN

A copy of the public health assessment can be reviewed during regular hours at the Evansville Vanderburgh County Public Library, 200 S.E. Martin Luther King Jr., Drive, Evansville, IN.

ATSDR will accept comments on this public health assessment through October 30, 2015.

Comments on the document must be made in writing and those received during the public comment period will be addressed in the final version. Comments (without the names of persons who submitted them) and ATSDR’s responses to the comments will appear in an appendix to the final public health assessment. Names of those who submit comments will be subject to release should requests be made under the U.S. Freedom of Information Act.

Send comments to: ATSDRRecordsCenter@cdc.gov, or mail to:

ATSDR Records Center
Attn: Rolanda Morrison
Re: Jacobsville Neighborhood Soil Contamination site – Evansville, IN
4770 Buford Highway, NE (MS F-09)
Atlanta, Georgia 30341

For more information about ATSDR’s work related to the Jacobsville Neighborhood Soil Contamination site, Evansville, IN, community members can call 1-800-CDC-INFO (1-800-232-4636) or visit www.cdc.gov/info.

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ATSDR, a federal public health agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, evaluates the potential for adverse human health effects of exposure to hazardous substances in the environment.

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