"EPA Detects Brain-Damaging Toxic Near School"

"Government regulators have found high levels of manganese, a dangerous metal that can affect the brain, in the air outside a school in eastern Ohio.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency officials cautioned Monday that the results outside LaCroft Elementary in East Liverpool, Ohio, were still preliminary. Even so, the samples — taken this summer and fall — averaged well above the level that the government considers safe for long-term exposure.

The monitoring is part of a $2.25 million EPA effort to examine the air outside 63 schools in 22 states. The program was launched in response to a USA TODAY investigation that identified hundreds of schools across the nation where the air outside appeared to be rife with toxic industrial chemicals."

Blake Morrison and Brad Heath report for USA TODAY December 15, 2009.

Source: USA TODAY, 12/15/2009