• The U.S. Army soon to inspect neighborhoods for harmful vapors

    By: Richard Elliot

    Updated:

    CLAYTON COUNTY, Ga - The U.S. Army will soon send teams of inspectors into neighborhoods around Fort Gillem to see if potentially toxic vapors from contaminated ground water seeped into homes.

    The Georgia Environmental Protection Division and the Army confirm the ground water under neighborhoods north and south of Gillem is contaminated by old buried landfills on the post in Clayton County.  The EPD said the landfills, which were buried there years ago, contain things like engine oil, cleaning solvents and rubber.

    "We will have people coming out early summer going door to door with informational packets and a permission slip to say we can come into your home and actually do the sampling. Why we feel it's necessary is we do have contamination in the ground water that's coming off the installation, and we want to ensure the safety of the community,” said Fort Gillem Site Manager and Environmental Coordinator Owen Nuttall.

    Nuttall said contaminated vapors could potentially lead to health problems.

    Some neighbors in the Joy Lake neighborhood south of Gillem welcome the Army inspections.

    "I think it'd be good if they did," said longtime resident Sara Holley. "They need to do something because it's scaring me."

    Nuttall said the inspectors should come out in the summer and winter months.

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