Illegal, Shallow Wells May Expose 1,000s of Fla. Homeowners to Health Risks

"THE ACREAGE — Thousands of private wells in The Acreage have been drilled illegally, without permits, and many are so shallow that homeowners are exposed to health risks from both inside and outside their homes, a Palm Beach Post investigation has found.

Acreage residents are reeling this weekend from Friday's report that the number of cancer cases in their neighborhood might be higher than normal. At the same time, they learned that samples from 49 residential wells show they meet drinking standards.

Despite those findings, shallow wells are especially vulnerable to contamination, and other recent studies in The Acreage, unrelated to the cancer scare, found it.

The law has few restrictions on where and how deep wells must go. What requirements exist are ignored routinely in The Acreage and elsewhere in Palm Beach County, inspectors say."

Stacey Singer reports for the Palm Beach Post August 29, 2009.

Monday, August 31, 2009