Residents in 25 Adelaide homes are being told to leave after
the discovery of elevated levels of a potentially dangerous
chemical in the air and soil.
Officials began door knocking the homes in Clovelly Park at
6pm on Wednesday (local time), a move Environment Minister
Ian Hunter revealed to reporters less than two hours earlier.
Elevated levels of TCE, used as a metal cleaner in industrial
settings, were found in soil and air tests.
The chemical can be carcinogenic when people are exposed to
high levels over an extended period, but Mr Hunter said the
amounts found were unlikely to cause health problems.
Most of the properties are Housing Trust and residents will
be offered health checks.
The government had planned to advise residents on Thursday,
but Opposition leader Steven Marshall raised the issue in
question time on Wednesday.
In a later statement, Mr Marshall said the residents were
only learning about the health risks they face due to
groundwater contamination because of a government leak to the
He said the government knew about the issue for six weeks and
cabinet had agreed to an action plan on Monday.
"It is completely and utterly unacceptable that it took 52
hours for Labor to communicate a serious health issue with
"How many other contamination issues is the Weatherill
Mr Hunter said the government would work with residents in
the coming months to relocate them.