Midwest’s postflood risk: toxic basements
A flood isn't over when it's over--some environmental hazards are still lurking, and, in many cases, growing. And, as other commentators have said, Midwesterners ravaged by historic floods most likely won't get as much federal aid as those affecte by Katrina.
The oil, gasoline, fertilizers, and herbicides swept away by floodwaters in June pose an environmental challenge to the rain-soaked Midwest.
But some of the most serious pollution problems may not lie outdoors. Instead, they could well lurk indoors in waterlogged basements and first floors of homes and businesses, where everything from cleaning agents to toxic metals accumulate in silt and mold.