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Monday, September 09, 2013

The problems with Blanche Park

What's lurking under beautiful Blanche Park?

 If your children (and pets) played in Blanche Park over the years, it might be a good idea to have them tested for lead, barium, dioxins, heavy metals and other things, many in the form of ash. That was the gist of Monday night's meeting at the park.

Commissioner Marc Sarnoff called a meeting to discuss the contamination of Blanche Park. While the commissioner spoke of 1946, when the City purchased the land, way before that, there was a dump -- since the 1930s. It was a huge hole in the ground and anything and everything was dumped in, including old cars. The entrance was on Alamanda Street. 
But the contaminants in question are from 1946 to the 1960s.

Regarding the lead, barium and other items, including melted glass, the City of Miami has been testing various parks and the outcome is that the park is "pretty contaminated," in Sarnoff's words. DERM dug down 6 inches to one foot and found various contaminants from years past, this all started with the investigation of the Old Smokey incinerator in Village West. At present the children's play area is capped and sealed, by rock and AstroTurf covering that. It's said to be safe.



Sarnoff explains the situation.
More testing will be done at the other end of the park, which is the dog park. There are holes there, dug by dogs and ground areas that are still open. So while the children's area is sealed, the dog park is not completely sealed.

Sarnoff says the City only knew of this for one week and DERM got right on it with the testing, wasting no time getting it tested in four days. 


Wilbur Mayorga, with DERM, explained to the 200 or so neighbors present (I counted), that "If you have a barrier, you do not have direct exposure." But parents are concerned with the past exposure incidents. One neighbor, Elizabeth Ramirez, was telling how kids play in a deep hole at one end of the park, immersing themselves and eating the dirt at times.

One good part about the dog park is that the one section that was tested there came out clean. They went down from 6 inches to one foot. More tests will be done and the tests that were done today are in the statistical analysis portion now.

The data that has been found has been sent to the local Department of Health. But many parents are not waiting for results, they are getting their children tested as soon as possible and I would guess their pets, too. There were almost as many dogs present at the meeting as people.

Al Crespo has a 2 part video of the meeting here.

There is a meeting on Wednesday, September 11, at 6 pm at Elizabeth Virrick Park (3255 Plaza Street), regarding Old Smokey and most likely Blanche Park now.

Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2013/09/09/3616055/contaminated-soil-found-in-blanche.html#storylink=cpy

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9 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Convenient that the playground just got astroturf... I smell conspiracy.

September 09, 2013 7:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What about the Public water Fontaine in the parc? Is the water Safe?

September 09, 2013 9:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What's troubling is that the agencies that were responsible for this in the first place are the one's we need to TRUST to get right it now. Great!

September 09, 2013 9:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I smell a huge class action lawsuit.there goes all the money for next years event

September 09, 2013 10:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My daughter goes (used to go) to this park every morning since she was almost a newborn. We live maybe 50 yards from Blanche. There is no way that ash/contaminant run-off from 75 years ago has dispersed enough into the ground to make this safe to allow for a park to be built on this site. What the hell? Who let this happen? It is one thing to try and profit by developing and destroying the Grove yet a very different thing to allow our kids to be subject to negative health effects. Maybe Crespo can dig up the zoning files, dig up the old waste-management capo grave sites, and rummage through the old off-shore bank accounts of city administrators and find out who let this happen.

Has anyone ever looked into how much this type of contaminant run-off "carries" via rain water and drainage pipe erosion, etc...over 80 years? Am I even safe at my home?

Seriously, it is now very clear that the guys at the helm of this city have always been idiots.

Dear Local Politicians: Pull out the old campaigning suits, start practicing "whodunit, not me" speeches, and upgrade your cell phone plans because you have now become public enemy #1 to every Grove Mom and Dad. We're thirstily awaiting the class-action law suits against you, the city for providing the land, MDWS for hiding/skipping the studies, and every other "for the people" entity we can touch.

September 09, 2013 10:07 PM  
Anonymous Al Crespo said...

To all the folks who I promised to get the video of the meeting up by 10 PM, please accept my apologies. You Tube is very slow tonight and I'm uploading over 50 minutes of video in 2 separate parts. I hope to have it up, and available at the crespogram report site before I go to bed, or if not early in the AM.

al crespo

PS: Please read the warning at the top of my site. What I write might be a little strong for some of you.

September 09, 2013 10:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

These people's kids were eating the dirt?

September 10, 2013 4:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wait a minute. Has anyone given thought to the SEVERAL TIMES commissioner sarnoff allocated funding to this pathetic park? How much monies wasted to revamp this useless park and how many times was it actually RENOVATED?
How does this slight contamination get passed the permits that allowed the waste of monies in the first place? THIS ASININE COMMISSIONER IS ALWAYS POINTING THE FINGER AT SOMEONE ELSE INSTEAD OF TAKING THE BLAME FOR HIS INCOMPETENCY AND FUTILE FINANCIAL ERRORS. WHEN ARE THE FOLK FROM THE GROVE GOING TO FINALLY REALIZE THIS?

September 12, 2013 1:13 PM  
Anonymous Willy said...

"On any given day, there are a handful of people, it only looks crowded since it is a small park..." This notion put forth by some that Blanche Park attracts only a "handful" of people at any give time is absolutely incorrect. Try driving by the park on any given weekday between 4PM and 7PM.

November 01, 2013 6:12 PM  

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