Town of Attica addresses smell from recycling plant
People in the town of Attica said they're fed up with the stench filling the air coming from a nearby recycling plant. Town officials had to answer to angry residents on Monday during a meeting, after the EPA started investigating. YNN's Natalia Martinez was there while tempers flared.
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ATTICA, N.Y. -- The room was packed with angry residents who said the air they breathe not only stinks, but is toxic.
"It's so bad, it's like trying to take a breath under water. You can't live this way, something has got to be done," said Randy Ellis, resident.
Ellis lives one block from the Hillcrest Recycling plant in Attica where residents said the pile of glass makes their town smell like burning garbage, and that its fumes are making them sick.
"We've got a child now whose mother's moved out of her home because he has a lung infection. Somebody's got to protect the people, we are getting sick, we're getting hospitalized, we're getting respiratory issues," said Jeffrey Huber, Attica School Board Member.
Town of Attica leaders took the brunt of the debate on Monday night. The EPA recently tested the air near the Hillcrest site. Those results are expected Tuesday. Hillcrest has said in the past that the smell comes from decaying food material in dirty glass bottles, but an Attica Village Trustee said that it's not true.
"Bull. The cause of that odor is burning combustion of plastics from the middle of that pile," said John Perry, Village of Attica Trustee.
That statement prompted even more anger from some residents.
"It's not a town problem, a county problem. Excuse me, it's our problem. It's your problem. We put you here. We want some problems answered. I don't even know who to call anymore," exclaimed Edd Helak, resident.
In July, Hillcrest said it needed 18 months to reduce the pile of materials. But, residents said they do not have that time.
"I'd like to see Attica go back to being the tranquil, happy community that it was," said Doug Patti, Town of Attica Supervisor.
The village of Attica will host a meeting on Wednesday to discuss the EPA's results.