Attica Residents Desperate for Relief from 'Stinky' Pile

September 19, 2012 Updated Sep 19, 2012 at 11:31 PM EDT

By John Borsa

September 19, 2012 Updated Sep 19, 2012 at 11:31 PM EDT

ATTICA, NY (WKBW) - Penny Keicher's backyard is covered in it. Swipe your fingers on her patio furniture and tiny particles glow on fingertips like glitter.

It is glass, she said, crushed to a fine powder.

It's everywhere, but state DEC officials said it is safe.

Keicher has her doubts.

"How can it not be wrong breathing in tiny little particles of glass?" she asked. "That's what we don't understand."

Residents say the glass is coming from Hillcrest Recycling, where a huge pile of glass and plastic has been smoldering through the hot summer months.

"Now it's turned into a toxic situation where now you have grayish, black smoke emanating from the pile, I can't believe that's very safe to breath either," said Village of Attica Trustee John Perry.

What does it smell like?

"Dirty, rotten, garbage, burning, sometimes there's a chemical smell in the air with it," said Keicher.

The village is still waiting for testing by the EPA. Hillcrest said they are working to reduce odors and insists the pile has no adverse effect on public health.