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City councillor says Waterdown Garden Supply neighbours need reassurance of well-water testing

Ancaster Coun. Lloyd Ferguson has asked staff if the city can provide free well water testing for lead, cyanide and oils, to those living near Waterdown garden Supplies. Google Street View

Residents in the area of Waterdown Garden Supplies would like to have their wells tested, as reassurance their water is safe to drink.

That’s according to Ancaster Coun. Lloyd Ferguson who asked staff during Wednesday’s general issues committee meeting if the city can provide free testing for lead, cyanide and oils, much like it already does for E. coli.

Read more: Ontario government introduces legislation to curb illegal soil dumping

Ferguson says those residents are worried about contamination as a result of soil dumping at the Highway 5 property, which has prompted cleanup orders and is currently the subject of lawsuits.

“I’d like to help these people,” said Ferguson, “they didn’t bring this on.”

Ferguson adds that while “source water says this stuff doesn’t travel in the aquifer,” he believes the residents “need the comfort level” that testing would provide.

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Read more: Hamilton area MP calls for RCMP to investigate contaminated soil dumping case

General Manager of Healthy and Safe Communities Paul Johnson says he’ll bring back an answer before the next city council meeting.

Johnson stresses that Ontario’s ministry for the environment, conservation and parks has jurisdiction and would have contacted Hamilton Public Health with any issues involving human health concerns.

“I do understand that there’s no evidence of migration” of contaminants, said Johnson.

A $75-million lawsuit filed by Waterdown Garden Supplies alleges that thousands of loads of “contaminated industrial soil” was trucked from city-owned locations and illegally dumped at the Flamborough site in 2018 and 2019.

The lawsuit alleges that two city employees, currently on paid leave, conspired in that operation.

Click to play video: 'High amounts of lead found in Canadian tap water' High amounts of lead found in Canadian tap water
High amounts of lead found in Canadian tap water – Nov 6, 2019

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