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'Why are we all sick?': Concerns linger for East Palestine residents as some conduct independent water testing

'I would like to say that I was shocked, but I really wasn't,' Courtney Miller said of test results showing high levels of dioxins.

CLEVELAND, Ohio — Courtney Miller lives just a few hundred yards away from where a Norfolk Southern freight train derailed in East Palestine.

She's been voicing her concerns about the toxic chemicals from that incident, and what could be lingering in the creek behind her home. She decided to get independent testing through a private company.

"I just don't trust their results," Miller said of state and federal officials. "We're all ending up sick, and they're telling us its safe and everything's at a safe level. Then why are we all sick?"

She shared those test results with 3News. The samples were taken on Feb. 22, and show dioxins and other chemicals known to cause cancer and numerous health issues.

"I would like to say that I was shocked, but I really wasn't because [of] the amount of people that are sick and the amount of people that are trying to say, 'Hey, we're right here. Pay attention. We're sick.'"

One test showed 130 picograms of dioxins per liter. According to the World Health Organization, 70 picograms per kilogram of body weight a month is safe to be ingested without "detectable health effects."

After calls for dioxin testing, on March 2, the EPA required Norfolk Southern to begin directly testing those levels.

Miller says morale in the village is only declining, with residents feeling like they're still not being heard and not trusting what they're being told.

"There are less and less of us that are showing up to these town hall meetings," she added. "Everyone is just so sick of the crap that they're trying to give us."


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