Health officials track contaminated soil to Kapolei construction lot

Published On: May 23 2014 06:29:36 PM HST   Updated On: May 23 2014 10:29:17 PM HST

A contaminated dirt trail that started at the Radford High School track has now led health officials to a construction lot behind the Kapolei Court house.

Click here to watch Catherine Cruz' story.

It may have been trucked in before anyone knew the soil was tainted.

"For a number of weeks before the state health officials closed down the excavation of the track, some soil was transported by truckers off-site,” said Deputy Health Director Gary Gill.

The Department of Education told KITV seven trucking companies may have hauled soil from the area.

It turns out that part of the campus was built over an old navy landfill and that’s why elevated levels of lead, cadmium and arsenic were found in the dirt.

The state says some of that soil ended up at the site in Kapolei and in a Kaneohe resident's back yard.

"There is no enforcement action yet. The main thing is to control the sites and get it cleaned up," said Gill.

But state investigators are also following up on leads that some of the dirt may have gone to a second location on Oahu's windward side.

Meanwhile developer D.R. Horton told KITV the area where the soil was taken is permitted for stockpiling and is located far away from homes it is building.

The site is under control of Royal Contracting.

Horton plans to investigate if protocols for testing of soil brought from offsite weren't followed.

"We will cooperate with the health department and if it proves to be an issue it will be dealt with according to the law,” said Bob Bruhl.

Councilmember Kimberly Pine believes this situation highlights the need for more accountability in the trucking industry and our waste stream

"It's extremely disconcerting. We need to be more proactive and know in all points in time where all waste from all construction debris and other demolition are going so we can protect our citizens not just now, but in the future," said Pine.

Pine is working on a variety of bills to address dumping -- a chronic problem on the west side.

If the Radford soil was trucked offsite back in December and health officials are only now learning about it, it means the soil has been blowing around unchecked for at least four months.


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