- The United States Air Force says none of its jets has
been flying in the skies over Espanola (Ontario) and spraying a mysterious
substance being blamed for illnesses by some residents of the paper mill
- If there are problems being caused by low-flying aircraft,
"It's nout the air force" causing them, said Lt. Col. Stevie
Shapiro of the USAF press office in Washingto, D.C.
- Shapiro said in a telephone interview Friday that she
checked with the highest sources in the USAF in response to concerns in
Espanola about the contrails - condensation trails - of passing US military
- Some Espanola residents say they have "photographic
evidence" which suggests KC-135 military aircraft has emitted or sprayed
substances at low altitude.
- Espanola resident Ben McNenly has presented town council
with a petition signed by 250 people who fear substances emitted from aircraft
engines may be leaving dangerous chemicals behind when they pass.
- Since the unidentified aircraft began appearing on a
weekly basis last February, McNenly said, he and others have suffered neck
pain, breathing problems, headaches, burning eyes and dry, hacking coughs.
- The Espanola residents have environmental test results
showing the emissions contrained carbon and military chaff, a fine material
used by military piolots to block enemy radar, McNenly said. Tests also
found unusually large numbers and varieties of fungi and molds, he added.
- McNenly said he believes the US military is testing carbon
as an agent that produces rain clouds to use weather as a weapon.
- Based on new reports from other area residents, he said
he also is concerned that substances other than carbon are being dropped
by passing military aircraft.
- Robert and Jeannette Deacon of Birch Island, about 25
kilometres from Espanola, are among thos who contacted McNenly. The Deacons
said they were outside on their waterfront property July 30 when they saw
an aircraft resembling a KC-135.
- "It was very low . . . just over the treetops.
We saw a brown emission coming from underneath the plane," Jeannette
Deacon said. A few days earlier, she found a strange brown resude on her
outdoor funitrure, she added.
- The matter was reported to Ministry of Environment and
a ministry official is supposed to visit the couple to test the residue,
- The US Air Force's Shapiro was suprised to learn Espanola-area
residents had identified the mysterious aircraft as KC-135s, which are
used by the USAF as cargo aircraft and for airborne refuelling of fighter
- But Sapiro categorically denied the air force had any
KC-135s in Northern Ontario.