Four months after the Seveso chemical factory disaster, authorities are still trying to cope with decontaminating the area.
Four months after the Seveso chemical factory disaster, authorities are still trying to cope with decontaminating the area. However, angry former residents who were evacuated from the town have been protesting angrily about the authorities 'measures.
SYNOPSIS: The main road through Seveso is flanked by large signs in several languages warning of dioxin contamination. But the road approaches the gas-stricken town through an area housing former residents. They claim that their livelihoods are being threatened by the signs. For the area depends largely on the production of furniture and clothing. Now sales have slumped because would-be purchasers fear the goods are contaminated. Fences have been erected to keep people out of the poisoned zone, and large plastic sheeting is being put up to prevent the wind blowing the contamination away. Everything within the affected area is being burnt, but former inhabitants claim the incinerator in the town centre will turn a large area of Saveso permanently into a general rubbish dump.
On Monday (8 November) a group of former residents invaded Seveso and protested to town officials and police about the warning signs and the incinerators. Burning is the second decontamination method tried. The first involved pouring over the ground a mixture of olive oil and a counter-chemical to the deadly dioxin, which spread over 700 acres (about 320 hectares) after the explosion in July.
Ultra-violet radiation from the sun would then break it down. The plan was abandoned after heavy rain, for fear it would spread the contamination.