Anaconda closes school stadium due to possible contamination

ANACONDA (AP) — The Anaconda school district closed its football stadium due to possible contamination from mine waste.

Superintendent Justin Barnes said Wednesday that workers discovered an old rail line buried less than 18 inches below the field’s surface last Friday when they were investigating the cause of a low spot.

The Montana Standard reports rail lines were built using smelting waste while train cars carried arsenic-laden copper ore.

The Environmental Protection Agency declared Anaconda a Superfund site in 1983. The agency ran tests this fall and said Mitchell Stadium is safe.

Barnes said the discovery of the rail line raises concerns about the accuracy of the testing.

Football season is over but students used the stadium for physical education classes. It’s not clear if the stadium will be usable for track and field this spring.

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