A Cancer Cluster in Frederick? - NBC4 Washington

A Cancer Cluster in Frederick?



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    A former Frederick resident says he has proof environmental factors caused abnormally high incidences of cancer in his community.

    Randy White has devoted his time and $200,000 of his own money to trying to get to the bottom of what is causing people to get sick in his town. At the center of the debate: Fort Detrick’s Area B. 

    According to EPA documents, the Area B landfill was used as a disposal area for chemical, biological and other waste from 1940 to 1970.

    In recent years, White said, those living in the surrounding area have been exposed to those dangerous chemicals. He commissioned teams of doctors and researchers who determined that more than 400 families living within a two mile radius of Area B were affected by cancer and other medical abnormalities.

    White's own 30-year-old daughter died two years ago from cancer, and now his wife has Stage 4 cancer.

    “All my family and many of my close friends living around the area where the children had grown up started to have cancer near Fort Detrick and were suffering from some of the same sicknesses and rare cancers,” White said.

    The Frederick Health Department has launched an investigation of their own into the allegations. A meeting is scheduled for next week, and the health department plans to release a full report in two months about whether they believe there is a higher rate of cancer around Area B.

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