SUFFOLK COUNTY, NY- Policeone.com reports that a police sergeant from Suffolk County passed away on October 4, 2018, from a form of cancer that he developed as a result of the time he spent working at Ground Zero in response to the terrorist attacks on September 11.
Police Sergeant Dennis W. Reichardt, 64 worked at Ground Zero for three years, combing through the debris. He also worked at the Fresh Kills landfill following the attacks. The Fresh Kills landfill was used as a sorting grounds for objects recovered in the debris after 9/11. The exposure to toxic dust and debris caused Reichardt to develop cancer. The Sergeant was a 29-year veteran.
The 9/11 attacks killed 72 police officers that day. Since the attack, many first responders and other individuals present at the scene have developed chronic and often fatal illnesses because of the toxic air they were breathing. The death toll from the attacks is continuing to rise.
Following the attacks, many people came back to Manhattan. The air was declared safe by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), but people there could see and smell that there was something wrong. Some of the people who returned to the area were only children at the time. The WTC Health Program has had doctors investigate the increased cases of cancer in these populations, and they have stated that the rates of cancer among people exposed to the air after 9/11 were the result of the toxic air.
James Zadroga, a detective with the NYPD, died of pulmonary fibrosis at the age of 34. The detective, who worked at Ground Zero, requested that an autopsy was performed to indicate whether his disease was from exposure to toxic air at the WTC. The autopsy found noxious chemicals and ground glass in Zadroga’s lungs. The realization helped push forward compensation programs for victims of 9/11, including the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act.
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