Flintshire cement works inquiry to study report

Reporter:

Helen Davies

AN INVESTIGATION into possible health and environmental risks surrounding a cement factory has taken a step further.

Reports have been published online which will be used as part of an ongoing study into the concerns regarding Hanson Cement in Padeswood.

The information includes death rates from cancer, coronary heart disease and respiratory disease in the seven health board areas across Wales.

Published by Public Health Wales, the data will also be used to support planning for health and social care services across Wales.

Fertility rates, age ranges and hospital admissions also feature in the statistics.

Joanne Menzies, communications officer for Public Health Wales, told the Leader: “This is the first part of the study, if community members want anything in more detail we will go away and look at that.”

Dr Kieran Humphreys, consultant in public health and health intelligence for Public Health Wales, added: “At this point we can’t tell which parts will be included in the final report. The type of information out there is one of the starting points in describing the area.

“There is a lot of variation in health experience in different geographical areas. Some can be explained but a lot of it is very difficult to explain as factors such as age profiles, lifestyle and employment figures have to be taken into account.

“This is one of the fundamental problems. It is a really challenging thing to try to demonstrate but the two teams working on this are really committed to getting as far as we can with this.”

Hanson Cement has welcomed the investigation as an opportunity to disprove claims that the site poses a risk.

A meeting will be held in September to update community leaders on how the investigation is progressing.

The Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board covers Flintshire and its reports can be viewed at www.publichealthwales.org.

See full story in the Leader

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