EPA to Begin Free Lead Testing at Cherokee County, Kansas, Superfund Site
New sitewide assessment will include testing of eligible residential yards, private drinking water wells, parks, and agricultural areas
LENEXA, KAN. (SEPT. 13, 2022) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will offer free residential lead testing, as part of a new sitewide assessment at the Cherokee County National Priorities List (NPL) Superfund Site in southeastern Kansas. EPA will investigate contamination within the site boundary (see map at right, click to enlarge).
Residents located within the site may sign up to have residential yards, private drinking water wells, agricultural land, and other areas (such as parks, playgrounds, streams, and mine wastes) tested for heavy metals associated with historic mining, such as lead, zinc and cadmium. Lead is the primary contaminant of concern.
“Children are particularly vulnerable to the effects of lead poisoning. As a mom of three kids, I encourage moms and caregivers of young children living within the boundaries of the Cherokee County Superfund Site in southeastern Kansas to act now,” said EPA Region 7 Administrator Meg McCollister. “You can protect your family from dangerous lead exposure by contacting us to have your yard, drinking water well, and even playground areas tested.”
The site covers approximately 115 square miles and includes the Kansas portion of the former Tri-State Mining District (TSMD), a 2,500-square-mile area in Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma. At one time, the TSMD was one of the world’s largest producers of lead and zinc.
To obtain no-cost lead testing of your residence and/or other areas of your property, please fill out a permission form by contacting EPA:
- Call EPA toll-free at 1-800-223-0425 or call EPA Contractor TetraTech at 620-284-1357.
- Email EPA at R7-TSMD@epa.gov
To date, EPA has cleaned up approximately 12.9 million cubic yards of mine waste and contaminated soil from the site; restored 2,747 acres of mined land to beneficial use; and cleaned up lead contamination at 800 residential yards at the site during past response actions.
- Learn more about how to sign up for the Cherokee County NPL Sitewide Assessment.
- View the Cherokee County NPL Site Assessment Video.
- Learn more about the Cherokee County NPL Superfund Site.
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