Smoke, fumes and stench continue to plague residents near Haags Bosch dumpsite
Residents of communities in close proximity to the Haags Bosch dumpsite aback Eccles, East Bank Demerara, continue their cry of being subjected to health hazards caused by the smoke and fumes emanating from the landfill site in the area.
Residents of those areas, on Tuesday, said their complaints have “fallen onto deaf ears” and “no one seems to be concerned” about their wellbeing.
“That girl have a baby over there and she can’t even open the door. Pon a morning, this whole place does get white, white and the smell, like it want suffocate you here,” one woman lamented.
Numerous persons living in the area expressed concern for the children, highlighting that many have succumbed to asthma attacks due to the thick cloud of smoke that would cloak the area on a regular basis.
On Friday last, residents complained about the many other complications they experience due to the smoke, highlighting that between the hours of 19:00hrs and 05:00hrs, the smoke is at its worst and does not clear up until 06:30hrs, adding that during the rainy weather the smoke would dissipate faster as compared to drier weather.
Meanwhile, on Saturday, the Communities Ministry in a statement issued via the Government Information Agency, said ‘spontaneously combusting’ fires continue to cause problems for residents of Eccles and nearby communities.
Project Director of the Georgetown Solid Waste Management Programme, Gordon Gilkes, said they implemented a temporary operator at the landfill to monitor the smoke and fumes.
Contrary to the belief that the smoke is as a result of wood being continuously burnt at that location, Gilkes said it is as a result of fire to a section of the building that used to store the wood.
He explained that the fire which occurred earlier in the month at the landfill was controlled, except for instances when it rains, resulting in smoke and fumes.
During the late period of last year, this issue had been raised by residents and even though complaints had been made to the Communities Ministry and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on numerous occasions, in each instance, they were told that the respective authorities were “looking into the matter.”