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EPA Testing for 'Possible' Carcinogen PCBs in West Virignia

Environmental Protection Agency
Environmental Protection Agency

The Environmental Protection Agency is conducting a month-long sampling of water and soil for PCB chemicals in West Virginia.

The testing in Minden until Friday is for polychlorinated biphenyls, which were commonly used as an electrical equipment insulator. The EPA lists PCBs as a "possible" carcinogen and in 1977 banned their used except in totally enclosed systems.

Local physician Dr. Hassan Amjad says the EPA is afraid of its mistakes and that several of his patients died of cancer.

In the 1980s, EPA officials told residents the Shaffer Equipment Company wasn't a health threat although they returned in 1992 to tear down the site and construct a cap over it. EPA documents say Shaffer used the abandoned mines to dump electrical equipment and contaminated oil.

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