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Tests show toxins beyond Fort Myers sludge dump

Posted at 7:43 PM, Dec 19, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-19 19:43:49-05

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- New test results show high contaminant levels in areas surrounding a dump site in Dunbar plagued by toxic sludge.

The study conducted by TestAmerica Labratories via the City of Fort Myers tested area wells, outside the fenced in South Street sludge site, and found higher than accepted levels of contaminants, most notably, arsenic. 

Neighbors don't believe the levels are random. They suspect runoff from the sludge site over the years contaminated other areas in the neighborhood. "My biggest concern is how far has this spread? Who else is contaminated?" said Theresa Hamilton, who lives in front of the site.

Curtis Sheard's family has been in the area for years. According to him, the neighborhood did not have a drainage system when it was first developed. He believes rain water could have easily spread anything dumped on the site. He believes the partial results are enough to prompt immediate action. "The original statement from DEP that there's no contamination off-site is false," he said. "It's time now to have a plan to clean up the site and the surrounding neighborhoods."

The city of Fort Myers provided the following statement:

"Please note that the test results posted yesterday (12/18/17) are partial results. The City will await commenting until the experts have provided a complete report. The City will continue to be transparent and to provide updates as certified results are received."