MULLAN, Idaho - School officials and parents in Mullan, Idaho are worried about their football players' safety.
They said the federal government is to blame after the Department of Environment Quality (DEQ) and other agencies discovered lead and arsenic contamination on the football field.
The DEQ tried to clean up the contamination by digging up the contaminated soil and replacing it with fresh soil. However, the school and parents said the DEQ left their field uneven and hard to play on.
"The end zones, when you cross, there's a hole. So we try to stay away from that in practice...you don't want to roll your ankle," said player Tyler Henderson.Mullan football vo
There are also places where water could collect on the field. Superintendent Robin Stanley said there are just too many problems for students to be safe.
"We are asking that they come in and fix it," said Stanley.
However, the DEQ said they fixed the drainage and contamination issue by removing some of the soil. They also made sure water flows away from the field.
"We only clean areas where there is contamination. We think we fixed our portion of the drainage issue," said Bruce Schold from the DEQ. "We don't see any substantial differences between the levels of the playing field and the level of the end zones."
The school district has plans to appeal. They said they're afraid if the field doesn't fit state regulations, they'll lose the opportunities to host state tournaments.
"We sure don't want to lose it because of something we had no control over," said Stanley.
Most importantly, school officials said the field is for the kids.
Mullan High School said they will continue to practice on the field while hoping for some change soon.
"We just hope it can get fixed soon so we don't have to worry about it," said Henderson.