DeLand residents to get results of well water tests

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DELAND, Fla. —

State officials have completed a year-long investigation into contaminated wells at the Country Club Estates community in DeLand. Wells in the area tested positive for dieldrin, a toxic pesticide.

Earl Ziebarth said he is happy to see crews connecting his home to clean city water.

More than a year ago, he learned his well was contaminated with the banned pesticide that some believe is linked to cancer.

"All of the residents were nervous and scared because they learned they'd been drinking and bathing and cooking in water that had been poison [for] maybe 10, 20 years," said Ziebarth.

State officials tested nearly 300 wells. One-hundred-sixteen of them tested above the state threshold for dieldrin.

Officials said they identified three potential sources: a former pest control company, use of dieldrin on home lawns and foundations, and from the use of it on the nearby golf course.

"[From] what we understand, nothing can be done about it, because it's going to take over a hundred years to get the poison out of the groundwater, so the options are city water or a filtration system," said Ziebarth.

For the 116 residents whose wells are contaminated, most were given filtration systems. Now, they're getting connected to city water for free.

For nearby residents whose wells tested below unsafe levels, they must pay to get clean water.

"It's known that they're poisoned. They're right next to houses that are tested as red houses, and they have children and families that live in those homes, and they're continuing to be poisoned every day," said Ziebarth.

The state will present the results of its investigation at a meeting Tuesday evening. The meeting will at the Immanuel Presbyterian Church at 6 p.m.