Santa Fe Springs Stench Returns

Residents say the smell is back and worse than ever

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    NEWSLETTERS

    An offensive odor over Santa Fe Springs and surrounding cities was traced back to a wastewater facility.

    It's back. The foul, rotten egg-like odor that caused dozens of residents in and around Santa Fe Springs to feel sick this summer has made a comeback this week, according to news crews and  more than 370 people who called the Air Quality Management District over the weekend.

    The sulfurous stench, which originates from a defunct oil facility belonging to Ridgeline Energy, first seeped out of a hole on the roof of a storage tank used to process industrial waste water, NBC4 first reported on July 30.

    NBC4 also reported in August that the company fixed the tank. But the smell, according to many residents, is back and worse than it was over the summer.

    "This past Sunday, the odor bothered our senior pastor so bad that he actually cut the message short," said Pastor Greg Gutierrez of the shortened service at Calvary Chapel Santa Fe Springs.

    The church was closed Monday, but the smell was just as bad inside Tuesday.

    "You open the door and it seems like there's just this trapped gassy odor inside the building that just didn't have anywhere else to go," Gutierrez said.

    Another dozen calls came in Tuesday morning, according to air quality management officials, who issued another two violations to Ridgeline Energy, bringing the total number of violations to 10 since April this year.

    While the smell can make you feel nauseous, health officials said the levels they are measuring now are not enough to cause long term health effects.

    "I'm not confident that it's harmless at this point," Gutierrez said.

    Ridgeline officials are scheduled to give a progress report at Air Quality Management District headquarters in Diamond Bar Wednesday at 10 a.m.

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