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West Islip meeting planned to discuss carcinogen found in creek

New contamination has been found at the former

New contamination has been found at the former Dzus Fasterner Co. in West Islip, seen here, Feb. 29, 2016, and has been seeping into nearby Willits Creek, which flows through nearby Beach St. Middle School and West Islip High School. Credit: Johnny Milano

The state Department of Environmental Conservation will hold an informational meeting this month about a superfund site in West Islip after testing revealed elevated levels of the compound cadmium in sediment of a nearby creek.

The DEC announced the planned meeting Tuesday, saying monitoring at the former Dzus Fasteners site on Union Boulevard found a new area of contamination of the carcinogen, thought to be a byproduct of flooding from superstorm Sandy.

The meeting date or location has not been set but DEC officials will have staff available for questions and make a presentation about the site.

“Throughout the remediation process, DEC will take appropriate steps to protect the public from potential exposure to the contaminated sediment,” the agency said in a statement.

Late last week, the DEC announced it had reclassified the site from “closed” to one that represents “a significant threat to public health” after high levels of cadmium were found in the floodplain of Willet’s Creek.

Sen. Phil Boyle (R-Bay Shore) criticized the DEC Tuesday for not putting out more information and called for public meetings. He offered help organizing.

“I imagine there are going to be many West Islip residents concerned about this,” Boyle said.

Dzus opened on the site in 1937. Cadmium, chromium, cyanide and organic compounds were discovered in soil and groundwater in the 1980s, according to a DEC site record.

In 1990, nearly 2,000 cubic yards of soil was removed from the leach field. In 1999, 19,000 cubic yards of sediment were removed from Willet’s Creek and Lake Capri, which is fed by the creek.

Dzus changed its name to DFCI Solutions Inc. in 2001. Southco Inc., a manufacturing firm, bought the company in 2014.

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