The Becton, Dickinson medical sterilization plant in Covington has agreed to a temporary shutdown according to 11-Alive news. The shutdown is scheduled from Oct. 30 to Nov. 6.
This comes in the wake of a scheduled hearing scheduled for Monday in front of Judge Eugene M. Benton of the Alcovy Judicial Court. The local community has been up in arms about the potential increased cancer risk from ethylene oxide (EtO) emissions from the plant. State and federal officials have accused the company of releasing excessive amounts of EtO, a gas used to sterilize medical equipment. Walnut Grove resident Cindy Jordan has taken it on to inform the community, as well as local and state officials, of the potential risk not just to Newton County, but also possibly to some communities in Walton County. She wrote a guest column recently to share on Your Local News.
According to 11Alive News, the Federal Drug Administration is concerned that the closure of companies such as BD could lead to a shortage of medical equipment.