Homeowners complain of odor from sewer work

Posted at 6:21 PM, Mar 21, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-22 09:13:15-04

Ashley Sloier's used to airing out her home on White Road these days. She has to because of what she describes as a constant burnt plastic smell. “It automatically takes your breath away. You're like what is that smell?” she explained.

The Cheektowaga resident said it's coming from a silvery liquid that settled in her basement sump pump. It stems from sewer work performed by a company called Insituform last week. The company is in the process of relining sewer pipes town wide to help minimize infiltration problems, improve flow and provide more structurally sound pipes.

In a letter from the company, residents were asked to limit their water use while the work was being done. “It said don't take a shower, or bath and don't run your dishwasher, or do your laundry. So, we're like it's 12 hours and it's no big deal.”

The letter also said homeowners might experience an odor. Sloier said there's no mistaking it. “I woke up in the middle of the night sick to my stomach from it.”

Sloier said she contacted Insituform and they did come and check out the problem. But, she said it hasn't been resolved. Our calls to the company weren't returned.

Sloier worries what kind of effect the smell might have on her health. “They should be giving us more information than what they have. People need to be asking questions about what are they using? What is causing that smell?”

The Town of Cheektowaga said they've received a handful of complaints. It said the gas is coming through a faulty trap or an illegal sub pump. The town recommends running water through the trap to fix it. But, it is on the homeowner to fix a faulty trap or an illegal sub pump.