More tests planned for Estill Co. water, air after initial landfill results return

Published: Mar. 7, 2016 at 10:35 PM EST
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County leaders say all tests so far have shown the air and water to be safe around an Estill County landfill where naturally-occurring radioactive waste was illegally dumped, but the county's judge-executive says more tests have been planned.

Judge-Executive Wallace Taylor told WKYT on Monday that preliminary tests show no radiation in the water, but one sample from a pond on the landfill's property did show elevated lead levels.

. Another team will conduct further testing of the county's air and water this weekend, Taylor said.

But those initial test results are little consolation for some folks living near the landfill who say this generation might never know the harm the radioactive material could do long-term.

"It's impacting not just the present, but the future," Kate Worsham said. "It's affecting everywhere from your health, to your property values, to the air - the whole thing - we're going to be affected all the way around."

Worsham and her husband have lived on Dry Branch Road for 15 years. Their and their neighbors' properties lie just over the ridge from the Blue Ridge Landfill,


Monday marked roughly a week and a half since that story broke, but neighbors' concerns are still strong as ever, they told WKYT's Garrett Wymer.

"It worries me because of the people that live here," Worsham said. "And because of the kids."

The landfill lies just across Highway 89 (Winchester Road) from Estill County High School, where county leaders held


Judge-Executive Taylor said officials are working with the landfill on a settlement that would require the landfill to install equipment to scan the contents of every truck that enters the property,


Fines against the landfill could total a couple million dollars, Taylor said Monday.