High levels of radon found in Huntsville Housing Authority apartment complex

VIDEO: High levels of radon found in Huntsville Housing Authority apartment complex

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Radon levels three times higher than the federal standard, were found inside a Huntsville Housing Authority apartment complex.

Leaders admitting, they knew about the high levels in the Butler Terrace Addition but never told anyone who lives there.

Silvia Thomas only knew about the high levels of radon after reading it in the news. She said she finally can pinpoint where and why she was getting so sick, nine years after moving out of the apartments.

High levels of radon found inside the walls of the Butler Terrace Apartments. The Huntsville Housing Authority's executive team admitted the last time levels were checked was back in the 1990s. “We care about their health and safety. We are doing everything we can to make that, to give them a safe living environment,” said executive director Sandra Eddlemon. But Silvia Thomas, a former Butler Terrace resident, said it's a little too late. “I have been through three surgeries because of my breathing and my throat.”

In 2009, she said she was diagnosed with thyroid cancer only a year after moving into her apartment. “We kept trying to figure out where my sickness came from. It didn't happen until I moved to Butler Terrace.”

It was around November when the housing authority learned of the high levels of radon. The retiring executive director didn't share the information with residents because she said she didn't want to scare them. “We are working on this, we have been working on it ever since we were notified on it,” said Eddlemon. Contractors were hired to reduce radon levels and begin repairs. So far, the poisonous levels haven't gone down much.

Thomas said she faces life-long health concerns and wants the city to be held responsible. “Every three months I have to take radiation pills and throat pills. Oh yes, it is dangerous. It is a weapon out there.”

Thomas said she will hire an attorney and hopes to get some of her medical debt paid.

The housing authority executive director will hold a meeting with residents sometime this week.

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