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Locals worried that asbestos is escaping Recology’s Hay Road landfill

Posted by Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance editorial staff

January 22, 2011

Vacaville, California - The Recology Hay Road landfill, located in Vacaville, California, has long been a location for asbestos disposal. However, some locals have been questioning Recology’s integrity and ability to dispose of asbestos properly. This toxic mineral poses a severe health hazard if dealt with inappropriately, causing such fatal diseases as asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma, a rare cancer of the protective lining of the lungs, heart, chest and abdomen.

"If I can see paper and regular garbage blowing around inside their fence, what happens with asbestos?" asks Eric Warnken, whose family has lived near Hay Road since before the landfill was built. "They try to tell me there is no smell when there is. That's why we doubt what they tell us. I take what they tell me with a grain of salt."

Warnken also claims that it took a while for the county to divulge that asbestos was being dumped at the landfill. Hay Road has been accepting asbestos for at least two decades. Yet Hay Road claims that it follows very strict guidelines from California’s Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery and Water Quality Control Board. The site is monitored with yearly compliance checks that include air tests and employee testing. Plus, Solano County's Environmental Health Manager Terry Schmidtbauer confirmed that the landfill undergoes routine monthly inspections.

For now, Recology seems to have all of its ducks in a row, and have the local government’s stamp of guarantee that the surrounding community is not being put at risk of asbestos cancer. Continued problems with smells blown off of the landfill and onto neighboring lands should be reported to the Department of Environmental.

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