posted on October 16, 2012 12:21
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced Monday that the fire at the Hillcrest Industries facility in Attica is fully extinguished.
But does that mean the problems are gone? In an interview with WBEN in Buffalo this morning, resident and Hillcrest neighbor Jeff Huber says there is already a noticeable improvement.
“The odor is gone," Huber said. "If it’s psychological or physical, a lot of us feel better because we’re not breathing burning plastic anymore.”
The EPA says it will continue to monitor the situation. A fire management and temperature monitoring plan will be in place until the material is processed and removed from the site.
Huber is thankful the EPA was able to remedy the situation, but says it’s disappointing that the State Department of Environmental Conservation let it get this far.
“It’s very unfortunate that the oversight of the DEC didn’t prevent this from happening," Huber said. "(Hillcrest) was in violation of permits and to have a pile of glass that could fill the football stadium in Buffalo – how it got to that point so that the burning could ensue is hard to understand.”
In the news release, the agency called this “truly good news” and a “welcome development for the community."
Crews had been working since Sept. 29 to extinguish the smoldering pile at Hillcrest that was believed to be the source of an awful odor and questionable air quality in the community for months.
Since the start of the process, nearly 49,000 cubic yards of material was moved and cooled.