Contact Us

Toms River Childhood Cancer Advocates Rip EPA Study

Toms River parents and health advocates who banded together when children’s cancer rates mushroomed nearly 20 years ago find little reason for vindication in a newly-completed study by the federal Environmental Protection Agency.

Linda Gillick, Toms River Citizens Action Committee for Childhood Cancer Cluster (Townsquare Media)

The report, being issued at Toms River Town Hall tonight, details a 10-year study aimed at determining possible links between pediatric cancer rates in the township and compounds known as SAN-trimer that were discovered in chemically-contaminated wells.

Linda Gillick, who leads the Toms River Citizens’ Action Committee for Childhood Cancer Cluster, calls the results disappointing, and the study flawed.

The EPA subjected lab rats in various stages of maturity, including pregnant ones, to draw comparisons to estimated human consumption. The chemicals entered water systems through underground leaks at the former Ciba-Geigy plant and through the dumping of a truckload of waste chemicals on the old Reich Farm tract.

The rise in childhood cancer rates and discovery of the chemical spills unleashed a torrent of heated response and action by parents and their supporters starting in 1996. It hastened Ciba’s closure and departure from the township.

Today, the TRCAC-CCC’s quarterly meetings draw a handful of spectators at best – but they remain as committed as they were then.

“The problem,” says Gillick, “is that they could never replicate” the chemical being ingested in the township, “with the radiologicals and all the other compounds that were in our water at the time.” She likens it to a generic substitute for a brand-name prescription medicine.

“We said from the beginning that this would be flawed,” Gillick insists.  “I think what this proves…is that since the water was removed from our drinking supply, the amount of cancer in children has drastically been reduced. And that, in itself, tells everything.”

Gillick credits United Water Toms River and Dow Chemical Company as the most consistent private-sector participants. United Water representatives, she says, meet with the group monthly. Dow, representing its Union Carbide subsidiary that took responsibility for the Reich Farm incident, sends researchers to each TRCAC-CCC meeting.

The Environmental Protection Agency and its report looms as the focus of tonight’s meeting at 7 PM in Toms River Town Hall. Members of the New Jersey Department of Health and Human Services, United Water, and Dow are also expected. It’s open to anyone interested in watchdogging the township’s health through its water infrastructure.

Gillick says that after tonight’s presentation, the group will plan a presentation for the entire Toms River community in the near future.

View the report at http://ntp.niehs.nih.gov/go/14366. There is a lengthy list, so scroll down to TR-573.

 

 

Best of the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your points and personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your points, prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account with your Facebook account, just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing profile and VIP program points. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to http://wobm.com using your Facebook account.

*Please note that your points, prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

Register on 92.7 WOBM quickly by logging in with your Facebook account. It's just as secure, and no password to remember!

Not a Member? Sign Up Here

Register on 92.7 WOBM quickly by logging in with your Facebook account. It's just as secure, and no password to remember!