Attica Residents Concerned About Their Health

September 7, 2012 Updated Oct 10, 2013 at 4:04 PM EDT

By WKBW News

September 7, 2012 Updated Oct 10, 2013 at 4:04 PM EDT

ATTICA, NY (WKBW-TV) A disturbing odor is plaguing resident in the Village of Attica.

"Its a smell of garbage, burning garbage, dead animals in the evening it's like a burning plastic," said Attica resident Julie Huber.

"The only way to describe it is putrid," said another Attica resident Bob Kirby.

The disturbing odor is coming from Hillcrest Coatings, a company that manufactures abrasive blast material and glass fragments used in reflective road striping.

Two years ago, essentially when the stench started, the company began stockpiling recycled material.

"What we feel happened in part of the pile, bacterial activity started occurring which increased the temperature to the point where odors coming off of it and smoldering of plastic going on," said Peter Tarnawskyj an environmental Consultant for Hillcrest Coatings.

But that's not all. Thick black soot and debris is littering people homes and in that black soot are tiny glass particles.

"We are breathing in little shards of glass and little pieces of coal ash which gives you a soar throat, raspy voice," said Huber.

Now many of the residents that are living near the plant are concerned about their health.

"we don't believe there is a health risk," said Tarnawskyj. "The DEC has come out and taken ambient air samples which show there isn't a health risk."

We did call the Department of Environmental Conservation and they declined an on camera interview, but they did send us an update on their findings.

The DEC conducted four residential dust samplings between July 10-17 of 2012. the results showed primarily large particle fragments from the Hillcrest facility.

"We've put down brine unfortunately with the dry summer that we've had it's been a challenge to get everything wetted at all times and so if we get a high wind episode we do see that there's dust and we're taking steps to mitigate that," said Tarnawskyj.

On August 8th the DEC conducted four, one-hour ambient air samples, three in nearby residential neighborhoods and one at the high school.

The results found there does not indicate a health concern in the community.

A link to the Department of Environmental Conservation's website can be found in the news links section of our website.