Archive for Sunday, July 15, 2007

EPA clears Coffeyville’s water, air

Residents still should avoid oil

July 15, 2007

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— No alarming levels of hazardous chemicals have been found in the air and water in Coffeyville, the Environmental Protection Agency said.

"The overall bottom line is there is nothing in any of the tests that we've seen that should send people screaming for the exits," said Rich Hood, a regional public affairs director for the EPA.

Still, people should stay out of the water as much as possible because of high levels of fecal matter, Hood said.

And people should try to avoid oil spread when record flooding on the Verdigris River sent water over a levee and into the Coffeyville Resources refinery on June 30, causing an estimated 71,000 gallons of crude oil to spill.

From July 2 to July 5, the EPA tested water for pesticides, PCBs and metal and organic contaminants.

"No metals were found at a concentration that would pose a short- or long-term health effect," the agency said in a statement. "Some organic contaminants, normally found in refined petroleum products, were detected in one sample, but at concentrations that would not be expected to pose a health hazard."

No pesticides or PCBs were detected.

The agency also said that air samples from July 2 through July 9 showed acceptable or declining contaminant levels.

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