By Clement Daly in the USA:
Chicago suburb provided contaminated water
13 May 2009
Last month, investigators from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) raided the Village Hall of Crestwood, a working-class suburb just south of Chicago, as well as the Public Works Department and the Police Department, in search of evidence to support allegations of environmental crimes. The warrant served by US Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald’s office was in response to a Chicago Tribune investigative report concerning the safety of Crestwood’s drinking water.
The Chicago Tribune reported that for over two decades, the village knowingly supplied its 11,000 residents with contaminated tap water. Records obtained by the Tribune show that in 1986 Illinois EPA officials shared test results of the well with the village that showed dangerous chemicals from a dry cleaning business less than 300 feet away had seeped into the ground water and contaminated the village’s well water.
At that time village officials assured state regulators that they would begin purchasing all tap water from Lake Michigan, using the contaminated well only in an emergency. However, records show that the contaminated well water was routinely pumped to Crestwood’s residents—providing up to 20 percent of all tap water for some months—for over 20 years.