Neighbors in Willowbrook demanded Monday a local Sterigenics plant stop operating immediately — but village officials say it’s not so simple.
Mayor Frank Trilla did announce the hiring of independent experts to look at the levels of Ethylene Oxide released from the plant, as previously mentioned by the federal report.
Neighbors voiced their concerns about cancer risks mentioned in the environmental document.
"My husband and kids are sick," resident Gabriela Rios told NBC 5.
And she's not alone.
"My son has asthmatic issues since we moved here," Neringa Zymancius said.
Neighboring communities are also concerned over possible health impacts.
"As I learn more about this, I see more neighbors affected by this who have cancer even in my daughters school there’s a child with Leukemia," Joanna Chlysteka, of Darien, said.
Trilla says the village hired two independent experts to witness EPA testing later this week.
“I feel like they kicked us in the gut and left us holding the bag because they dropped a toxic report on my town and now everybody is scared," he said.
Trilla said he asked Sterigenics to stop using chemicals until more testing is done, but also says he doesn’t have authority to shut them down.
“We worked with three or four different attorneys," he said. "It’s not as simple as it sounds, but we’re looking into everything we can do."
NBC 5 contacted Sterigenics Monday night but couldn’t reach anyone.
Trilla says he’ll ask Illinois public health officials to start a cancer study for the area.