The Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has begun the clean-up process in Troy, Montana, a town located about 20 miles from Libby, where hundreds have died or been sickened by asbestos contamination from a local vermiculite mine.
According to the Western News, it’s expected to take two construction seasons to inspect 1,200 properties in the city of Troy, along Highway 2 from Bull Lake Road to Yaak Flats and some along Callahan, Iron Creek and Lake Creek roads. Inspections will begin April 30, the DEQ reports. Approximately $1.2 million will be spent on these inspections from now through September.
Letters were recently mailed to property owners, asking them for permission to access properties for inspection purposes. Within one week, 170 were signed and returned, reported Michelle Carlson, community involvement coordinator in the DEQ’s Troy office.
No one quite knows what DEQ inspectors will find. Ã¢â‚¬Å“Toxic studies need to be done,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Catherine LeCours, the federal Superfund project manager for Montana Department of Environmental Quality in Helena. Ã¢â‚¬Å“Because of the proximity to Libby and the fact that a lot of workers lived in Troy, they could’ve taken it home on their clothing. I expect to find it at a reasonably less frequent (rate) than Libby. Ã¢â‚¬Å“It’s not known when the actual clean-up will begin [because of funding issues].Ã¢â‚¬Â