Task force formed to find people who dumped chemicals in sewer

by: Jenna Deery Updated:

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. - City of Charlotte officials are putting together a task force to find whoever is responsible for illegally dumping into the sewer system.
 
Eyewitness News has been covering an illegal dump affecting people in Union, Anson, Cabarrus and Mecklenburg counties on Friday.
 
Even though the drinking water is safe, officials are taking drastic actions to find who dumped the dangerous chemicals in a storm drain.

ARTICLE: Mayor on illegal dumping: 'Anything coming out of your faucet is safe'

One business owner said he may have some information to help with the investigation.

Anthony Martin, said his son saw something suspicious at a nearby business.
 
He said he saw a red truck about a month ago and some men putting something into a grease trap behind a nearby Food Lion off Sugar Creek Road.
 
“He probably startled them and they figured they better take off,” Martin said.
It wasn't until investigators showed up Friday morning that he realized what he saw might be part of a bigger problem.
 
Workers at the Mallard Creek water treatment plant were able to stop PCB and another toxic chemical from getting into the public's water after noticing an oily sheen on top of the water in a trap.

City officials are launching a multi-agency task force to find whoever put people at risk.

One expert said PCB never goes away.

Sam Perkins is the Catawba riverkeeper and said PCB was banned in the 1970s because it was linked to a host of health issues, including cancer.

You also can't get rid of it because it's such a durable chemical and when it impacts the fish and makes them unsafe to eat.
 
"We should not tolerate any level of an ability of someone to go out there to do these kinds of things," Perkins said.
 
Water experts will be running tests through the weekend to make sure the chemicals are gone from the system.
 
Police said the people responsible are facing state and federal charges connected to the illegal dumping.