By Elizabeth Zach, RCAC staff writer

water access lidAfter the Camp Fire in Paradise, California, last year, scientists found that burned plastics in some water lines had released high levels of cancer-causing benzenes. Those toxic agents are still in Paradise’s water, they now say.

Moreover, residents say that state and local officials have not given them clear information on which water is safe, who is at risk and who is not. California regulators issued water safety guidelines to area homeowners in June..

According to Purdue University engineer Andrew Whelton, who studies how disasters affect water infrastructure, stringent testing is lacking, which is unfortunate because residents cannot determine what water is safe to use.

“Nobody should encounter these types of decisions following a disaster,” Whelton told National Public Radio, “because it’s not their fault that this happened.”

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