Monday, September 8, 2014

Everett Smelter Plume: Soil removal starts at more homes

By Seth Preston, communications manager, Toxics Cleanup Program

A worker digs up soil from an Everett home's yard.

We're moving dirt again in Everett.

Our cleanup contractor has started work at 19 homes in northeast Everett to remove soil from yards contaminated by fallout from the old Everett Smelter. Clean soil will be brought in, and new sod will be laid.

More to come

That work is expected to carry into early 2015. We're also going to be doing soil testing at about 50 other homes next year, to get ready for cleanup work in coming years.

Contamination from arsenic, lead and other metals was detected in 1990 at the former Everett Smelter property near North Broadway and East Marine View Drive.
Studies also showed that arsenic and lead from smokestack emissions settled onto the ground in the northeastern part of the city. About 500 private residences, three city parks, and commercial and industrial areas were impacted.

See for yourself

Workers lay new sod at an Everett home.
If you're a resident of northeast Everett or you're just curious about how these cleanups work, be sure to check out our photo galleries of past work. The images with this post also provide a glimpse.

We also have plenty of information on how to protect yourself and your family from low-level contaminated soil, and how to work in your garden safely.


Marcio Wilges said...

I hope the residents don't have to foot the costs of the soil removal when this is something totally beyond their control. There should be some form of subsidies for this right?

Seth Preston said...

Thanks, Marcio. Yes, this is a voluntary program -- homeowners do not have to participate. If they choose to do so, the costs are covered by money that the state of Washington obtained through a bankruptcy settlement with the former smelter owner.