1983 – 1985: Minlaton (SA). Childhood leukaemia

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Between 1983 and 1985 Minlaton, a South Australian town of 850 people had three cases of leukaemia in children. All three lived in Eighth Street, directly adjacent to farmland. Helen Howatt, a farmer’s daughter and resident of Eighth Street, became interested in the cancer rate after the death of three people who lived on three adjacent farms. One was her father.

During the eight to ten month period prior to the children’s death I recall crop aerial spraying being conducted on a property west of us, often on extremely windy days, the winds being westerly. The residents complained of a strong smell and within a short period began to notice their rain water was tasting of chemical residue and their gardens were being affected. As well as the children, there have been another two cancer victims die within months and one other diagnosed at that time. They all lived on the same street as well, only doors away from each other. There are two, in the same locality, including myself, with cervical cancer. p 29 Quick Poison Slow Poison. Pesticide Risk in the Lucky Country. Kate Short 1994