The story appears on

Page A8

January 20, 2010

GET this page in PDF

Free for subscribers

View shopping cart

Related News

Home » Nation

Battery plant held blameless in lead poisoning of children

AUTHORITIES in Guangdong Province have dismissed parents' claims that a battery manufacturing plant was responsible for the lead poisoning of at least 10 children.

Medical tests taken on December 31 have shown 10 out of 33 children, aged 2 to 12, in the second village of Xingren Community, Shijiao Town, Qingyuan City, had excessive levels of lead in their blood.

The most serious case was Luo Zhicheng, an 11-year-old girl, with a blood lead level at 213 micrograms of lead per liter of blood.

The other nine children had blood lead levels ranging from 100 to 199 micrograms of lead per liter of blood, proving mild exposure to lead.

Villagers blame Weierdun Industrial Co Ltd, a battery manufacturer.

"I often see black smoke spiraling from the battery factory and it is very smelly. We don't dare to leave our doors open," said Lin Bingqun, a villager living near the plant.

Villagers have video footage of used batteries piled on the factory's floor. The piles have since been moved and the battery factory has suspended operations.

"The batteries we produce don't contain lead," said Li Zhenrong, manager of the factory. "I admit that we didn't dispose of the used batteries very well but we are working on that."

His assessment was echoed by the Qingyuan Environmental Protection Bureau.

Lead poisoning could be caused by several factors, such as inhaling too much automobile exhaust, said Zhang Xiaofeng, a Qingyuan Environmental Protection Bureau official.

"We will further investigate the cause of the poisoning," said Zhang.

Too much lead can damage various systems of the body, including the nervous and reproductive systems and the kidneys, and it can cause high blood pressure or anemia.

High blood lead levels in children can cause irreversible consequences, including learning disabilities, behavioral problems, and mental retardation. At very high levels, lead can cause convulsions, coma and death, says a document available on the Website of the World Health Organization.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend