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More families in Richmond getting sick

RICHMOND, Utah (ABC 4 News) – The investigation of toxic air around the Frandsen household may be bigger than just one family.
RICHMOND, Utah (ABC 4 News) – The investigation of toxic air around the Frandsen household may be bigger than just one family.

For more than a year, the Frandsens have gotten sick every time they are in or near their home. Doctors can’t explain why.

They moved out and ran dozens of home test. Each test came back clean, but an inspector found gases, or Volatile Organic Compounds, are seeping into the house.

The mystery of where these gases are coming from goes beyond with walls of their home.

“My neighbors, they’re having effects as well,” Karen Frandsen said.

Some neighbors believe the ground is contaminated.

“It has affected everybody,” Dinah Webb, a neighbor, said.

Webb lives on a different street, but walks the neighborhood.

“The chemical smell is really strong sometimes,” she said. “You'd get an instant headache going by it.”

Webb is referring to the same area where empty pesticide jugs were store for years.

Neighbors told ABC4 News they watched people rinse out the containers and let the water soak into the ground.

“My son had chronic sinus infections over the years,” Kelli Cordon, a neighbor, said. “It seems everything has gotten worse.”

Cordon lives near the area where the empty pesticide containers were stored too, however, she is cautious to place blame.

“I'm not going to claim that might be it,” she said.

All women tell ABC4 News they have similar symptoms. Some feel “dizzy,” while others have a “cloudy head” or are unable to concentrate.

The ladies want a solution for the safety of their community.

“I’d hate to have my dream home and not be able to live in it,” Webb said.

That is exactly what has happened to the Frandsens.

“We’ve been hoping that we could live here again,” Karen added. “We just want answers.”

William Popendorf, a retired professor from Utah State University, has specialized in industrial hygiene and chemical hazards.

Popendorf told ABC4 News he believes the gases, or VOC’s, around the Frandsen home can only come from the breakdown of pesticides.

A spokesman for the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food said an inspector checked the home in 2011, but found no pesticide contamination or no reason to test the ground.
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