The Environmental Protection Agency is extending a helping hand to homeowners and residents in the Coeur d’Alene River Basin who have high levels of lead in their yards or homes.
The EPA mailed out letters this week through the Panhandle Health District to residents who participated in last summer’s health assessment study and had high lead levels in test results.
The letter invites residents to call the EPA at a toll-free number to talk about the results and discuss possible measures to reduce lead exposure.
Those measures could include yard remediation, said Mary Jane Nearman of the EPA.
Nearman said the appropriate action at a given household will depend on the specific situation. The EPA also is discussing with basin mining companies how to address contamination in neighborhoods.
“One of the things we’re working on is what is the next step,” she said.
The EPA expects to conduct additional environmental tests of common areas, such as playgrounds and recreation areas, in the basin. Residents who didn’t participate in last summer’s state study may be asked again to have sampling done on their property.
Because the individual results from last summer’s study were confidential, the EPA’s letters were addressed to “Dear Resident,” and sent to the individual homes by the Panhandle Health District, which has the individual results.
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