As for the water being monitored closely, well lets just say you can't trust anyone. Several residents said that the National Toxicology Program, which conducted the study, wasted its time and money. Sign up and get your guide! Link sought to cancer cluster in Toms River : Published in the Ocean County Observer By MARGARET F. BONAFIDE Staff Writer TOMS RIVER -- John Cardini's daughter, Jessica, 12, a leukemia victim, has been in remission for 3-1/2 years. Follow her on Twitter @MaryAnnSpoto. Was the Toms River childhood cancer cluster a mirage, an aberration, or a warning? " The money is surely no consolation to the 15 families whose children have died, and to the new cases of childhood cancer being diagnosed each year. Settlement In "Cancer Cluster" Case . A film company owned by actor Danny DeVito has optioned the screen rights of an award-winning book about a Toms River chemical spill and cancer cluster. m_gallery = "reich_farm_in_toms_river"; The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with the prior written permission of Advance Local. And guess what?" Toms River, once a quintessential Jersey shore town, is the focus of Dan Fagin's Pulitzer prize-winning book Toms Rivers: A Story of Science and Salvation. Waste products from the plant were either stored in 47,000 drums or were treated and pumped through a pipeline to the Atlantic Ocean. © 2020 Advance Local Media LLC. Bruce Moholt, a toxicologist who has volunteered with Gillick's group, told EPA officials that scientists should have studied a chemical called acrylonitrile, a component of SAN Trimer. That, she said, makes the study worthless. Mark Cukerr, an attorney who represented several of the cancer cluster families in civil lawsuits, questioned how the scientists could have easily dismissed evidence that the number of childhood leukemia cases decreased after two wells supplying drinking water were closed in the late 1990s. How Can You Lower Your Risk for Leukemia? In response to the residents' concerns, the New Jersey Department of Health in 1996 studied the problem and found that between 1979 and 1995, 90 children in the township were diagnosed with cancer. And instead of limiting their observations to the rats' spinal columns, scientists also looked at their peripheral nerves, such as the sciatic nerve, they said. How is Linda Gillick portrayed? It concluded:. Yet the latest study said SAN Trimer didn't cause cancer in rats and the report stopped short of saying the substance caused abnormalities affecting the nervous system of the rats. Community Rules apply to all content you upload or otherwise submit to this site. m_gallery_pagetype = "embed"; Since the 1990s, Toms River families affected by cancer linked to industrial pollution pursued a class-action lawsuit against the Ciba-Geigy Corporation, Union Carbide Corporation, and the United Water Toms River. Toms River is the second-largest all-volunteer squad in the state. Was it a consequence of nothing but a stunningly bad run of luck, like rolling snake eyes six times in a row? She has co-authored two books for the popular Dummies Series (as Shereen Jegtvig). m_gallery_id = "16924585"; Linda Gillick lives in the village of Toms River, New Jersey, with her 20-year-old son Michael. Belton TJ. m_gallery_permalink = "http://photos.nj.com/8001122/gallery/reich_farm_in_toms_river/index.html"; The New Jersey Department of Health and the federal Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry conducted a study to evaluate the relationship between the environmental exposures and the cases of cancer. "My own feeling is that...since acrylonitrile was also in these wastes and is a known potent carcinogen, that this whole study, which was obviously very expensive, was looking at the wrong substance," Moholt told EPA officials and NTP scientists. Toms river cancer cluster. In 1995, the NJDOH released an analysis of childhood cancer using State Cancer Registry data for the period 1979 through 1991. Consider the personalities involved in the Toms River cancer cluster story. Read our. m_gallery_creation_date = "Tuesday, February 03, 2015, 2:51 PM"; Toms River also has a cancer cluster however again, nothing has been proven. Study after study has either turned up no connection or has been inconclusive. They said SAN Trimer wasn't studied in its proper form and it may not even be the culprit. Families Settle for Childhood Cancer Claims In Toms River, N.J. A settlement has been reached between 69 families in Toms River, N.J., and two chemical companies and a water company the families blame for environmental pollution they claim led to dozens of cases of childhood cancers. m_gallery_title = "Reich Farm in Toms River"; A 1995 cancer investigation indicated that relative to the state, the Toms River section of Dover Township had excess childhood cancer incidence for all malignant cancers combined, brain and central nervous system (CNS) cancers, and leukemia. Verywell Health uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. But Gillick said tests were done with SAN Trimer that wasn't exactly like the one found in the water near Reich Farm. A second cluster, involving cases of leukemia and brain cancer among girls in Toms River, New Jersey, may be linked to two Superfund sites nearby, but that link is debatable. "I do get the sense that you're making light of certain things and I don't appreciate it," Kotran told EPA and NTP officials. How is she 'used' by journalists covering the story? In the 1960s, the lower river was found to have been polluted for many years from the open discharge of waste from a Ciba Geigy dye manufacturing plant. Is Microwave Popcorn Still a Health Risk? Published January 2003. There is a pipeline running from Ciba-Geigy eastward towards the bay that was responsible for the majority of the "cancer cluster" cases. As the chairwoman of a cancer support group called Oceans of Love for Children with Cancer, she began noticing large numbers of cases in Toms River in the mid 1990's. In 1983, the Toms River site was placed on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Superfund list. Anywhere else outside of that corridor had no more of a cancer risk than anywhere else. When Toms River welcomed the Swiss chemical company Ciba-Geigy (now known as Novartis) in 1952, they did not know that the company had left towns in both Switzerland and Ohio due to complaints about air and water pollution. From 1952-1990, the Ciba-Geigy Corporation (since acquired by BASF) operated a dye manufacturing plant in Toms River. These New Jersey Towns Possibly Exposed To Cancer-Causing Gas, State Says - Hopatcong-Sparta, NJ - The gas is responsible for killing 566 New Jersey residents each year, state officials say. And for that he's extremely grateful. Toms River cancer cluster still a mystery despite 20 years of studies. Fagin does an excellent job of explaining how events unfolded and his particular writing style which included other illustrative historical accountings is effective in helping the layman understand the scientific process. And so it was again with a new study on that newly identified substance, called styrene-acrylonitrile trimer (SAN Trimer). Author Dan … New Brunswick, NJ: Rivergate Books; 2011. Soil Pollution May Contribute to Antibiotic Resistance, Study Finds, Air Pollution Exacerbates COVID-19 Mortality, Study Finds, Know the Symptoms of Blood Clots in Your Lungs, The Importance of Radon Testing and Mitigation, Why Diversity Matters In COVID-19 Vaccine Trials. Responsible for the popular Dummies series ( as shereen Jegtvig ) suspected cancer cluster still a mystery 20... Number of children with long-term or severe medical problems eyes six times in a row the abnormalities in 1990s... From 1972-1974 Union Carbide removed drums, trench waste, and contaminated soil for! More easily than SAN Trimer did not cause cancer in rats the facts within our articles removal! Period 1979 through 1991 was it a consequence of nothing but a stunningly bad run of luck like... 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