Federal EPA officials say they're close to wrapping up their investigation into a toxic-water case in a small northern Illinois town. The agency says the brutal winter hampered their probe into contaminated groundwater in Wedron.
Officials say they now hope to issue the final reports sometime this summer. Several private wells in the LaSalle County community tested positive for elevated levels of benzene. So far, samples taken from replacement wells have shown that the water is free of chemicals.
But resident Richard Eirhart says that doesn't mean locals are no longer worried.
"The ones that don't have the stuff in their water figure their days are numbered. It's only a matter of time," Eirhart said.
The latest results are due next month. The investigation also includes taking soil samples.
In addition to the EPA's actions, dozens of residents have filed a lawsuit against several companies suspected of being the source of the contamination. The legal action was spurred by the involvement of famed environmentalist Erin Brockovich, who visited the town last year.