IREDELL COUNTY, N.C. — Iredell Statesville Schools turned concern into results after testing water samples at all 36 district campuses. Researchers say all those tests came back within normal range.
The school district tested clean for radon as well.
This is all in response to the continued alarm surrounding the many reported cases of thyroid cancer throughout the Mooresville area.
The Town of Mooresville partnered with the Iredell Health Department along with local and state researchers to investigate this growing health issue.
Iredell Statesville School joined the conversation in December 2018.
Since then, the district has completed tests and held meetings to dig deeper into the thyroid cancer concern.
Statistics show that on average there are about 11 cancer cases per 100 thousand people statewide in North Carolina. That number nearly doubles to more than 21 cancer cases per 100 thousand people in Iredell County alone.
“This is very, very close to me," State Senator Vicki Sawyer said. "I have two daughters and so this is something that has spared and makes me continue to ask those hard questions.”
Some believe the area’s many cancer cases may be linked to the coal ash found at Duke energy’s Marshall Steam Station.
“The state has looked at decades worth of national and international research," Duke spokesperson Bill Norton says. "The good news is they found there is no known connection between thyroid cancer and coal ash."
At this point, it’s still unclear what the exact cause behind the thyroid cancer cases might be.
Iredell Statesville Schools also tested soil at its campuses as a precaution too.
The Iredell Health Department expects the results from that soil testing to be available by the end of February.