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State and Federal Agencies to Offer Health, Environmental Information on Chromium Contamination in Great Bend, Kan.

Release Date: 03/04/2009
Contact Information: Fritz Hirter, (913) 551-7130,

Environmental News


(Kansas City, Kan., March 4, 2009) - Representatives from EPA Region 7, the federal Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) will visit Great Bend, Kan., next week for a pair of public availability sessions to provide information to residents about a local chromium contamination issue.

The availability sessions, which will also provide information about upcoming activities to be performed by each agency, are scheduled from noon to 2 p.m., and 6 to 8 p.m., on Tuesday, March 10, at The Front Door, a community meeting space at 1615 Tenth Street in Great Bend.

Local residents are encouraged to visit one-on-one with the agencies' representatives. No appointments or reservations are necessary. (NOTE TO ASSIGNMENT EDITORS: A special briefing for news media will be held from 9 to 10 a.m. that date, at the same location.)

The sessions are intended to provide information and address community concerns about a chromium groundwater plume associated with Plating, Inc., a metal electroplating business that formerly operated near Great Bend. Past investigations identified that chromium entered the groundwater as a result of a leaky storage tank in the company's facility.

Known health effects from chromium exposure may include skin irritation and ulceration, damage to the liver and kidneys, as well as damage to circulatory and nerve tissues, depending on the duration and level of exposure.

WHO: EPA Region 7, ATSDR and KDHE representatives

WHAT: Informal availability sessions to discuss chromium contamination in Great Bend, Kan.

WHEN: Tuesday, March 10, 2009; 9 – 10 a.m. (news media only); noon – 2 p.m. for the public; 6 – 8 p.m. for the public

WHERE: The Front Door, 1615 Tenth St., Great Bend, Kan.