Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Nasty odour drives residents indoors

WAGGA residents living in the vicinity of the Kooringal sewage treatment plant were confined indoors over the weekend as the smell from the plant became unbearable.
In the past week, residents have been left confined to their homes with the usual odour from the old plant becoming stronger and more pungent.

A door-to-door investigation carried out by The Daily Advertiser yesterday found residents torn between disgust for the increasing repulsive smell and patience for the new plant that will supposedly end the ongoing odour.

Residents living in the streets surrounding the plant received a letter from Wagga City Council informing them of work that would be carried out at the old plant, which may increase the smell temporarily.

Kara MacKender, who has lived on Maple Road for eight years, received the letter in September which she said “promised there would be no more smell”.

“You can’t even sit outside at the moment. It is putrid,” she said.

“I have always hated it and found it really foul but it’s ripe at the moment.

“Around Christmas the smell started getting worse and it’s just absolutely disgusting.

“I hope the work they are doing works.”

Ms MacKender said the ongoing odour has made her regret buying on Maple Road.

Patricia Taylor has been a resident of Maple Road for 30 years, but yesterday she said this Christmas was the first one she had been forced to celebrate indoors.

“This is the worst I have ever smelt it, you walk outside and you gag,” she said.

“I was actually blaming the horses before I realised it was coming from the sewerage.”

Resident Robert Van Delft was less out-spoken, admitting while he has noticed the smell is a “bit worse”, he hopes the work being carried out will end the odour.

“If after they have finished the work there is no improvement, then I would complain,” he said.

“We were warned this was going to happen, and if it is going to be better in the long run we just have to put up with it at the moment.”

Wagga mayor Kerry Pascoe yesterday apologised for the “fairly strong odour”, but declared the smell will subside in the “next three or four days”.

“The odour out there is due to the de-commissioning of the old sewage plant combined with extremely high temperatures,” he said.

“At the moment they are cleaning out the sludge and it is causing the problem. Of course this could happen when it is old sludge and water.

“We hope within the next three to four days the smell will subside.”

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