ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — Attorneys for 30,000 residents who live in the Avalon Park area of Orange County filed a class-action lawsuit Thursday, alleging the Orlando Utilities Commission polluted their neighborhood with cancerous toxins from a nearby power plant.
After months of investigations and testing of soil samples in the Avalon Park area, lawyers who filed the lawsuit on behalf of Stoneybrook East, Avalon Park and Eastwood residents claim coal ash from the nearby OUC power plant has created a cancer cluster.
“The numbers we are seeing and the rise in the elevation [of] exceedingly rare cancer cases in children is just blowing up here,” said attorney Leslie Kroeger.
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The OUC is not the only one named in the suit. Developers such as the Lennar Corporation and Avalon Park Group Management marketed the homes as family-friendly environments.
Residents say they asked the developers if there was any health risk associated with the plant before they purchased their homes. The developers told them it was safe, the suit claims.
“We find it astounding they did it underneath the shadow of this coal-fired power plant. They did nothing to find out ways to make it safe. They did not warn any of the people who bought here what they were getting into,” Kroeger said.
Besides damages, residents are asking that testing be done, as well as removal of all radioactive waste and related contaminants.
OUC told Channel 9 they are highly regulated by both state and federal governments.
In a statement, Avalon Park Management told Channel 9, “We are not aware of this action, however, we do not comment on any active or pending litigation.”
The other contractor, Lennar, did not respond to Channel 9’s request for comment.