More than dozen people exposed to mercury in Iowa
ARMSTRONG (AP) — More than a dozen people, including four children, are being watched for symptoms of mercury poisoning after they were exposed in the north-central Iowa town of Armstrong.
Emmet County emergency manager Terry Reekers said Tuesday that the mercury exposure happened after a construction worker remodeling a house found a plastic bottle with about 40 pounds of liquid mercury in the basement on Friday.
The worker may face criminal charges for illegally transporting hazardous materials if law enforcement officials decide to prosecute him for taking the mercury to a bar to show friends and taking it back to the construction site. The Environmental Protection Agency says high levels of mercury exposure can lead to kidney damage, respiratory failure and death.
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