Report: Missouri Creek contamination may increase cancer risks

HAZELWOOD, Mo. – A federal report says that people who lived near or played in a polluted creek in the St. Louis from the 1960s to the 1990s may have a higher risk of developing cancer.

The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry released a report Monday on cancer risks from exposure to radioactive contaminants in Coldwater Creek of St. Louis County, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported. The report found that exposure could increase the risk of bone cancer, lung cancer and leukemia, including a lower risk of skin and bad cancer.

People who lived near the stream since 2000 were believed to have lower levels of radiation exposure, but still have the possibly higher risk of bone or lung cancer, according to the report.

Nuclear waste from World War II weapons production contaminated the creek decades ago. Garbage was thrown at sites near the St. Louis Lambert International Airport, next to the creek that flows into the Missouri River. The US Army Corps of Engineers UU He has been cleaning the creek for approximately 20 years.

More than 140 current and former residents of North County have filed federal lawsuits over the past six years alleging that exposure to nuclear waste has caused illness or death. [19659009] State health officials requested federal badistance after a 2014 report indicated high rates of leukemia, bad cancer, colon and other cancers in the areas surrounding Coldwater Creek. The toxic substances agency, part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, launched a study two years ago on the possible link between stream contamination and cancer cases.

Cancer clusters are difficult for scientists to investigate due to the complexity of the disease. Agency researchers used historical soil test data to determine estimates of exposure level.

"They're recognizing our exposure, and that's a big problem," said Kim Visintine, who leads the Coldwater Creek volunteer group: Just the Facts Please. The group has tracked 6,000 residents from the previous and current area who have cancer diagnoses, he said.

He said the group will pursue federal legislation to recognize county residents through the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act, which allows for compensation claims for uranium workers or those living at leeward of test sites nuclear in western states.


Information from: St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

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