Relief Coming For Landfill Neighbors

Posted at 6:14 PM, Jan 27, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-28 11:45:06-05

The winter months have done wonders to help residents in the Walter Hill Community who live near the Middle Point Landfill.

It can best be described in a few words, "decades of trash," said resident Mike Martinez. 

For several years residents have voiced their displeasure with the odor in the community. "It does get a little overwhelming in the summer. Open your front door and there's the smell," Martinez said.  

However, this winter residents had enough and demanded action from lawmakers.

"It really came to a head before Christmas, we started to hear more about it," Senator Jim Tracy said. 

The biggest complaints from residents; the smell and truck routes through residential areas. This week the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation said its making changes to help solve some of those issues.

In a letter to state leaders TDEC said its research indicates the odor comes from wastewater sludge deliveries during all times of the day. "Smyrna and Murfreesboro were dumping their sludge early in the morning, late in the afternoon," Tracy explained. 

To help TDEC said those deliveries will now be between 7 a.m. and 4 p.m. However, those times can change if the odor issue isn't solved. Secondly, the truck routes are being re-routed to avoid residential neighborhoods.

"Any kind of help will help," Martinez said with relief. 

"I'm very thankful that TDEC has gotten involved in this and initiated some action by the company who does the landfill. I think this is a reaction to the citizens being involved and that's the way the government is supposed to work," Tracy said.

You can view the entire letter from TDEC here.