Acreage cancer cluster investigation: Count at 47 - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Acreage cancer cluster investigation: Count at 47

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By Emily Pantelides bio | email
Posted by Rachel Leigh - email

PALM BEACH COUNTY, FL (WFLX) - The numbers continue to rise, and people continue to point fingers at possible causes. Now, new information about that potential cancer cluster in the Acreage.

A vastly different group of almost 50 people have three potential leading hypothesis.

  • Pesticides from the nearby orange groves
  • Canals coming from Big Sugar
  • Nearby company Pratt & Whitney

Pratt Whitney stated:

"We are aware of no connection to Pratt & Whitney on this issue, and we have not been contacted by the State during their investigation. Pratt & Whitney has a comprehensive environment, health and safety program to ensure that our employees and our communities are safe. It is the company's #1 priority to operate in a safe and environmentally responsible manor."

When we asked specific questions about a lawsuit filed in Connecticut against the company for causing brain cancer there, Pratt Whitney told us:

"In Connecticut, Pratt & Whitney has sponsored a $12+ million, multi-year, independent epidemiology study in response to concerns that an unusual number of brain cancer cases had occurred among workers at our North Haven, Connecticut facility.

The first phase of the study was released last year, and the data shows that the mortality rate for P&W employees employed at the CT facilities between 1952 and 2001 were the same or lower than expected for most causes of death, including all cancers combined when compared to the U.S. and CT populations. Based on Phase I results, no clear, consistent relationship between the P&W workplace and brain cancer has been found.

Based on the data available to date, we have every reason to believe we are providing a safe workplace for our employees."

As for the orange groves, Callery-Judge Groves told us: "We have always followed the laws and guidelines. We have specific instructions on how to use pesticides from the government that we follow. It would be good to know some answers."

But, at this point, nobody really knows those answers not even the health department. "I've lived in the Acreage for 28 years, and I'm very concerned about it. I don't want cancer," said one resident.

The health department says they've scheduled another public meeting for July 30.

So far, the rough count is 34 adults and 13 kids for a total of 47 people in the Acreage with some form of brain cancer.

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