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EPA Launches Lower Manhattan Cleaning Hotline

Release Date: 06/03/2002
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(#02053) New York, New York – Starting today, lower Manhattan residents can request cleaning and/or testing of their homes from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) by logging on to the Agency’s World Trade Center Web page at or by calling the EPA hotline at 1-877-796-5471. The launch of the hotline and Web site marks the startup of the comprehensive multi-agency program that was announced in May to ensure that apartments impacted by the collapse of the World Trade Center have been properly cleaned. EPA and its federal, state and city partners are collaborating in this unprecedented effort to provide assurances that people are not being exposed to pollutants related to the World Trade Center collapse at levels that might pose long term health risks.

The cleaning and testing services will be available to lower Manhattan residents who live south of Canal, Allen and Pike Streets. The hotline will be staffed to take cleaning and testing requests between 10 a.m. and 8 p.m., Monday through Friday and between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday for about three months starting June 3rd .

When residents call to register for either cleaning or testing, they will be asked basic questions including how many rooms in their home, how dusty it was following 9/11, how it was cleaned, and if tests were done. Once registered, residents will be given a confirmation number and a privacy code. They can use this number and code to track - on either the Web or through the hotline – the status of their cleanup and/or testing and to check test results once the cleanup and testing are completed. EPA will make every effort coordinate cleanup requests if they come from the same building and the Agency encourages tenant associations to work to coordinate residents’ requests.

The hotline will have English, Spanish and Chinese-speaking representatives. Operators will be equipped to answer basic questions on the cleanup program and EPA monitoring activities. EPA will meet on an on-going basis with residents and tenant organizations, community and other interested groups to discuss the program. EPA is advertizing the hotline using a combination of direct mailings, flyers and posters, and media outreach

“I encourage residents of lower Manhattan to take advantage of our cleaning and testing program,” said Jane Kenny, EPA Regional Administrator. “The program will provide downtown residents with a measure of confidence that their homes have been properly cleaned.”

While EPA is working out the final contracting details on how the cleanup program will be implemented, the Agency will register residents. Information gathered from these residents will be used to gauge the best approach to scheduling cleanups. Scheduling will begin in July.