EAST YAPHANK, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Town of Brookhaven officials announced Tuesday that they will take legal action against the Long Island Rail Road to clean up a shuttered yard full of toxic chemicals in East Yaphank.
As 1010 WINS’ Mona Rivera reported, arsenic, mercury and chromium are among the toxins sitting in the rail yard, which was once used as a dump site.
Brookhaven Town Supervisor Ed Romaine said Tuesday that the site must be cleaned up at once.
“Clean up this mess. Excavate it. Take the threat away,” Romaine said.
Romaine said he has served notice on the Metropolitan Transportation Authority that the town will sue in U.S. District Court over the site.
Back in March, Kim Kelly, whose home is near the site, said she is afraid that underground water supplies are already contaminated.
“Very – and the table is so high here,” she said.
The MTA said it was given permission to “cap” the site with a cover, which it plans to do.
But Romaine said a cap is “completely unacceptable,” as it will merely cover up the contaminants and leave them where they are.
But Romaine told WCBS 880’s Sophia Hall the substances were dumped many decades ago, and the concrete “cap” will merely cover up the contaminants and leave them where they are.
“They chose the cheapest method in the short run,” Romaine said. “In the long run, it will be far more expensive because they’re going to have to monitor this forever.”
The town said the site is only 500 feet east of the Carmans River and near the Wertheim Wildlife Refuge, and the toxins need to be removed completely before they seep into the river and groundwater.
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