ST. LOUIS–(KMOX)–Updating a story we’ve been following for you on KMOX, the St. Louis County Health Department is urging the state to test the foul-smelling air residents are breathing near a burning landfill.
Residents getting an almost daily whiff of the underground fire at the Bridgeton Sanitary Landfill have been complaining of headaches and asthma symptoms. Earlier this week the Missouri Coalition for the Environment also called on MO DNR to test the air.
So far, MO DNR has balked, saying it supports a plan to let the landfill owner hire a consultant to test the air. St. Louis County Health Director Dr. Delores Gunn says she wants the state to do the testing to ensure the data is reliable.
“We need to see evidence from a viable entity with no other interests,” Gunn said, “an unbiased entity that can give us valid data of what odors are actually emitting off that particular landfill.”
Gunn says she contacted the EPA and already received a commitment from them to check the air for possible radiation from the nuclear waste-filled West Lake Landfill, which is next to the landfill that’s burning. Gunn says the EPA air testing should start in about a week.
Gunn says she is still waiting for a call back from the Director of MO DNR to learn if the state will answer her call for independent air monitoring. Residents have reported smelling the odors in a wide area that includes St. Charles, Maryland Heights, Bridgeton and St. Ann.