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EPA relocating residents living near contaminated creek

Ashley Hassett/WBFO News

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has announced it will relocate six Lockport families away from the contaminated waters of Eighteenmile Creek. That section of creek near the affected Water Street homes is a federally-designated Superfund cleanup site because of chemicals dumped by former industries that have been closed for decades. 

The six families will be relocated and their homes will be demolished. The site will then be cleaned up.

Senator Charles Schumer, who was an advocate for the families in pushing for the relocations, says this is the most cost-effective way for the EPA to deal with the site.

“The EPA’s decision to move the residents away from contamination first, and then clean up the contaminated site is a smart choice for the health and safety of Western New Yorkers. I am pleased that the EPA has heeded my call and is proposing as part of their remedial action plan the relocation of these residents, which prioritizes safety and is the far more cost-effective option,” said Schumer.

“This proposed solution takes these residents out of harms’ way, and avoids a course of action that would have left them exposed to hazardous contamination. These homeowners who have rightfully been concerned about contamination in their yards, drinking water, and flooded basements are now going to get the relief and peace of mind they deserve.”

The contaminated creek tends to flood several times per year, most recently during the heavy rains of June 28.


Mark Wozniak, WBFO's local All Things Considered host, has been at WBFO since mid-1978.
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