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Flint Michigan: 100,000 residents dead from lead poisoning and may not know it

In environment on January 22, 2016 at 9:28 AM

Flint Michigan: 100,000 residents dead from lead poisoning and may not know it

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The near 100,000 residents of Flint Michigan are being poisoned by water purchased by them for consumption.

They are deathly sick and may not know it yet. Lead poisoning is a very serious condition and the state of emergency has not yet been realized.

Leads effect on your body is insidious at first, but the gradual decline and the devastating toll on your body is not often realized for years.

Flints population is comprised mostly of blacks at 57 percent, 37 percent white and 6 percent other. 42 percent live below the poverty line.

The city is facing bankruptcy and poor policy decisions by its officials have compromised their safety.

Perhaps one could reduce that because they are poor and less diverse than other cities, the lead problem could easily be swept under a rug and the hope being this would just go away.

The lead source was identified as a pipe corrosion problem from switching a water source that was more corrosive to the lining of water pipes supplying water to this community.

The Washington Post reported that in “April 2014, Flint stopped getting water from Detroit and began using water from the Flint River. The change was announced in a news release that acknowledged “lingering uncertainty about the quality of the water” and also sought to “dispel myths and promote the truth about the Flint River and its viability as a residential water resource,” assuring the public that the the water would be tested.”

“Residents quickly began complaining of water that smelled or was discolored. Flint began getting water from Detroit again in October, but by that time some residents had been drinking the water for 19 months.”

The integrity of the lead pipe wall has been eroded causing lead to leech freely into the water supply of almost every home in Flint Michigan. This chemical reaction has essentially poisoned every resident of Flint Michigan and created a health crisis not seen on a community since Chernobyl.

Many in local and state government thought this move would assist the city in overcoming mounting debt by saving money. Not a wise move in hindsight.

Lead poisoning by human absorption can be absorbed by inhalation of leaded fumes, think Leaded gas, lead paint in homes and through food and water. The devastating cumulative effect on children is our greatest loss.

According to WHO, the World Health Organization, “Lead is a metal with no known biological benefit to humans. Too much lead can damage various systems of the body including the nervous and reproductive systems and the kidneys, and it can cause high blood pressure and anemia. Lead accumulates in the bones and lead poisoning may be diagnosed from a blue line around the gums. Lead is especially harmful to the developing brains of fetuses and young children and to pregnant women. Lead interferes with the metabolism of calcium and Vitamin D. High blood lead levels in children can cause consequences which may be irreversible including learning disabilities, behavioral problems, and mental retardation. At very high levels, lead can cause convulsions, coma and death.”

An EPA Regional Manager Susan Hedman had stepped down over the lead problem. It has been alleged that the EPA knew of this problem for years and failed to act responsibly to keep residents from harm.

Simply acknowledging that there is a problem does not make the water quality better. Michigan Governor Snyder has offered 38 million to “fix” the problem but I’m afraid the cost will exceed billions.

The protective barrier inside the pipes are corroded and compromised. This must be fixed before anyone can expect lead levels to fall. Currently according to local activist residents the lead tainted water continues to flow at high levels.

Meanwhile, Flint resident will continue to consume, bathe and cook with contaminated water and the devastating effect on their bodies will intensify.

19 plus months of lead consumption will be devastating to this community.

Because there are not dead bodies laying around everywhere this tragedy somehow seems benign and rationally explained away. It looks good in the media. Truth be known 100,000 plus residents of Flint may already be dead and their fate not yet fully realized. The darker tragedy lies just under the surface where social uproar acceptance levels are comfortable.

There has been a cover up in this scenario somewhere and those responsible need not “step down” but held accountable for their actions. The layers will soon be pulled back and the major players will be exposed. The political football has been passed and more and more are becoming aware of this huge health issue.

We may not see the full effect of this incident today, but tomorrow may be devastating.

This community is in grave danger!

Create awareness and alarm, this will spur action.

Sources of information: Please read these publications frequently. Support these sources!

http://www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/diseases/lead/en/

http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/closer-demographics-flint-michigan-36430744

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2016/01/21/michigan-authorities-debated-responsibility-for-flint-water-crisis-emails-show/

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