Times Beach, Missouri, was a small, low-income town of
2,240 residents in St. Louis County. In 1973, roads in rural Times
Beach were sprayed with oil to control the dust.
Ten years later, it was discovered that this seemingly harmless oil
contained the hazardous chemical waste dioxin. It was the largest
civilian exposure to dioxin ever in the United States.
People in white
insulated spacesuits with an array of testing devices descended on the
town and the residents were "treated like pariahs...don't go near 'em."
Eventually, the federal government was forced to condemn, totally
evacuate, and buy its first toxic town.
Through archival footage,
interviews with former residents, government officials,
media and legal analysts and others, the story of the town's fate is told and significant questions
are raised about judgments made by the government, chemical
industry, and media.