EPA to test for lead and arsenic at Pueblo's Runyon Field

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PUEBLO COUNTY, Colo. (KKTV) - The EPA will be testing a popular baseball field to see if there are dangerous chemicals that could be affecting the kids playing on it.

Pueblo County commissioners gave the "OK" for the testing at Runyon Field Sports Complex, which is near downtown.

Commissioner Terry Hart said the EPA should be out before the end of the year. They picked to do it now because there aren’t any games going on and the commissioners don’t want to interfere with any games in the spring.

The EPA has been testing in that part of the city because of the Superfund site. Runyon Field is right on the boundary of the testing area. Hart said the EPA has found lead or arsenic that exceeds the health standards in the state.

The testing is going to find out though where exactly the particles are, whether they’re on the surface or underground. Hart said the community shouldn’t be concerned about this right now.

“Do we think there is a decent chance of lead or arsenic on the site? Probably, but it’s probably a foot or so deep down below the surface. So it’s not an immediate concern, but it’s a long-term concern,” said Hart.

Hart added it shouldn’t be an immediate issue because of all the work that’s happened at the field over the past several decades.

“Outside dirt has been brought in in order to lift up the site and different types of soils have been brought in to make sure that the infield and areas around the fields are the consistency they need for the baseball projects ... they have planted grass, obviously, in the outfield and we have paved parking spaces,” said Hart.

The testing will take about two to three weeks to finish up. The EPA will get results instantly. Then they’ll verify those results which will take another two to three weeks.