Community Health Outreach: Let's Talk About Exide
The Los Angeles County Health Agency and the Department of Public Health are continuing outreach efforts to support residents in the communities affected by the release of hazardous materials from Exide Technologies, the former battery recycling facility in the city of Vernon.
With the support of Supervisor Hilda L. Solis, the Department of Public Health led an unprecedented effort on June 10, 2017, to conduct a door-to-door community outreach event to homes within 1.7 miles from the Exide facility. Outreach teams visited households in Bell, Boyle Heights, Commerce, Maywood, East Los Angeles, Huntington Park and Vernon to conduct a health survey to understand the concerns and needs of residents and provide health education materials and resources.
Lead Paint Cleanup in Communities Impacted by Exide (10/10/2018)
The Department of Public Health is dedicating newly available funds to provide free lead paint repair to qualifying homes in communities impacted by Exide. As DTSC completes their soil cleanup, DPH will aid residents by identifying and mitigating lead paint hazards in high risk homes, prioritizing those occupied first by children with elevated blood lead levels, followed by other young children and pregnant women. For more information, please check our Free Lead Paint Cleanup for Qualifying Homes Flyer - English and HUD Grant FAQ - English.
Public Health is hosting a series of community events to discuss results of the health survey and recommendations made by the communities affected by the release of hazardous materials from the Exide plant.
These efforts build upon previous Health Agency outreach activities to educate residents about the dangers of lead exposures and methods to minimize exposure, along with delivering resources for free blood lead screening and other healthcare services. Additionally, the County wants to ensure that residents are connected to needed resources and are supported in their advocacy efforts to live in healthy neighborhoods and homes.
EXIDE TECHNOLOGIESBattery Recycling Plant
Exide’s operations resulted in the release of harmful levels of lead and arsenic into the environment in the communities surrounding Exide’s former Vernon facility.
Exposure to high levels of these chemicals increase the risk of cancer, breathing diseases, and learning problems. More than 100,000 people who live, work, and play near and around the former Exide plant may be at risk. To protect the public’s health, specially-trained workers are cleaning up affected homes and yards in these areas.
Exide and the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) are responsible for all cleanup activities. However, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (Public Health) is working with affected communities to make sure the cleanup is successful and responsive to the community’s needs.
How do I sign up for free blood lead testing?
To sign up for free and confidential blood lead testing , or for more information, please call 1(844) 888-2290.
Can I still get my soil tested?
Yes, the Department of Toxic Substances Control is continuing its soil sampling efforts. For more information and to sign up for soil testing, please visit DTSC’s Residential Cleanup Webpage.
When will my property be cleaned?
For more information about the cleanup process, please call the Department of Toxic Substances Control Exide Hotline at 1 (844) 225-3887 or visit DTSC's Exide Webpage.
LOS ANGELES COUNTY’S RESPONSE TO THE EXIDE CONTAMINATION
May 2016 – Present
- The County remains committed to the community’s health through its Exide Community Health Outreach campaign, which includes Community Health Fairs, community meetings, free blood lead testing outreaches, door-to-door outreaches, school outreaches in collaboration with Los Angeles Unified School District, and partnerships with community based organizations and other events.
- Health educational materials and resource packets were mailed to all residents in the affected areas. Educational materials and resources included information on lead, cancer, soil testing, LA County’s response to Exide, stress management, mental health, and free blood lead testing. The packets help to inform the affected residents of the public health implications related to the Exide contamination, as well as providing resources to the community to empower them to protect their health.
- The County launches its Exide Community Health Outreach campaign to continue outreach efforts. County staff reached more than 1,200 residents door-to-door, and mailed a health resource guide to all residents in affected areas.
- The County has completed its project for lead sampling of 500 properties in Commerce, Maywood, and unincorporated East Los Angeles. The County will no longer conduct lead testing.
- Notification of test results were hand delivered to residents by nurses and health educators.
- The County will begin taking soil samples on February 29. Through mid-March, 500 properties will be sampled.
- The County continues to collect access agreements for soil assessments within select areas in the Preliminary Investigation Area.
- Protocols for soil assessments for lead are under development. Verified results will be available within one month of sampling.
- The County develops a project to quickly assess 500 homes in the DTSC-identified "Preliminary Investigation Area".
- The County is collecting access agreements from property owners for soil sampling.
- County staff are going door-to-door within select areas in the Preliminary Investigation Area to explain the County’s role and process.
Board Motion by Supervisor Solis directs The Health Agency to:
- Quickly find contaminated areas
- Facilitate lead removal and cleaning of homes, yards and public spaces, and
- Provide information, health screenings, and other resources to community members.