SALINA, Kan. — State health officials are notifying families in and around Saline County that investigators have found no single cause for elevated lead levels in their children’s blood.

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment is sending letters to families of 32 children, telling them the high lead levels are caused by conditions inside their homes rather than a common source, The Kansas City Star reported (http://bit.ly/2bPKjId ).

The high levels were found in routine physical examinations in and around Saline County between January 2015 and March 2016.

The agency’s findings will be officially released in September but letters are being sent to the affected households now so families can address the causes in their homes, said department spokeswoman Cassie Sparks.

“There might be one or multiple things for each family” to eliminate their children’s exposure to lead, Sparks said. “But there are no commonalities among the cases, and we hadn’t expected there to be one cause.”

Allen and Jessie Long said inspectors found traces of lead from old paint on their front porch and paint dust had dropped onto the ground where their 2-year-old daughter plays. Their daughter was among the children with slightly elevated lead levels in their bloodstreams.

“I think we got our answer. Now we just have to get it cleaned up,” said Allen Long.

Long said he was relieved that the source of the elevated lead levels was not in single cause, such as the city’s water supply, a public play area or a local battery manufacturer.

One renter, Nicole Krob, said she gave her state inspection report to her landlord, who she hopes will install new siding to replace chipping exterior paint.

“The landlord has no choice but to fix it since health officials know,” said Krob, who has three children carrying high lead levels.


Information from: The Kansas City Star, http://www.kcstar.com

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