Tuesday, October 11, 2016

State Waited NINE Months To Tell Public About Flint Water Issues

By-Brandon Hall
(Email West

Every week, the news out of Flint only seems to get worse-this week is no exception...

It has now been revealed that the State waited 9 months to tell the public about Legionnaire's disease despite offers of assistance...

According to MLive:
"The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency offered to investigate the Flint area's Legionnaires' disease outbreak in early 2015, saying its labs were "set up (and) ready," but the overture was shelved to give the state of Michigan more time to "figure out" a plan for telling people about the epidemic first.

Documents released last week by the EPA in response to Freedom of Information Act requests show that top officials in the agency's Region 5 office offered to conduct sampling and analysis for Legionella in March 2015, nine months before Gov. Rick Snyder first told the public about the outbreak that resulted in 12 deaths in 2014 and 2015.

The EPA is the second federal agency that offered technical assistance to the state as it attempted to deal with an explosion of Legionnaires' cases here — help that wasn't initially accepted by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services or the state Department of Environmental Quality.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also offered to conduct a comprehensive Legionnaires' investigation after it was contacted by the Genesee County Health Department in February 2015, but the state never made an official request for that help, telling the CDC it had the skills and resources needed to perform the investigation itself.Spokeswomen for Snyder and the DHHS would not comment on the documents released by EPA last week, including an email from Jennifer Crooks, an EPA program manager, which summarizes a conference call between state and federal officials in March 2015.

Public health officials identified the Flint River as a potential source of a deadly outbreak of Legionnaires' disease some 15 months ago."
Brandon Hall is a lifelong political nerd from Grand Haven, and is the Managing Editor of West Michigan Politics.

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Photo By Darlene Dowling Thompson

1 comment:

  1. We need the names of the people in charge of the MDEQ and DHHS and why did they wait so long to tell Snyder? If he was told we need documents proving that. Then if told, why didn't he act?