Testing underway for harmful vapors in Como neighborhood

9:24 PM, Nov 25, 2013   |    comments
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MINNEAPOLIS - Testing for potentially harmful underground vapors continues in the Como Neighborhood of Minneapolis.

Minnesota-based General Mills is encouraging homeowners in the area to schedule tests to determine if further mitigation efforts are needed.

"We want homeowners to schedule appointments," said General Mills spokesperson Kirstie Foster. "We are going to make this right because Minneapolis is our home."

The General Mills Research Lab dumped trichloroethylene or TCE into the ground more than 50 years ago. General Mills has worked for decades to ensure the groundwater is safe, but testing shows that a plume of vapors remains in the soil.

The chemical which was used as a solvent can be harmful if inhaled, but there have been no reports of illnesses.

Teams of engineers are looking to test 200 homes in the neighborhood. The test requires crews to drill a small hole in the basement level of the home to gain access to the soil underneath.

"Homes that test above the levels set by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency will be offered vapor mitigation systems," says Foster. "They are a proven solution for vapor issues."

Testing will conclude in December.

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