CARSON (CBSLA) – Hydrogen sulfide discovered in the air near Freeway 405 could be responsible for the pungent, sulphurous odor that has plagued Carson residents for nearly a week.
“What the hell is causing this problem, and while everyone is farting around, we are all sitting here suffering. You got that smell. We struggle with nausea, headaches and all other ailments. Thank goodness I only have bad migraines, ”said Ana Meni from Carson.
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Meni said her patience was depleted days ago because of the foul smell, although the symptoms of nausea caused by the smell outlasted her.
Officials believe the stench was hydrogen sulfide, which came from a large area of rotting growth in the Dominguez Canal.
“It wakes you up at night. It’s so strong, ”said Alfredo Huerta from Carson.
Sunday night, an LA County and Carson City command team told leaders, public works and health officials they were about to clear the air. That could mean flushing the canal or adding oxygen to the water, but as much as the officers want to clean the air quickly, they said they had to be careful.
“I want science to tell me what to do, not to guess. We could expose this and even worsen the odor, to be honest, taking all of the water out could create even more odor, ”said Mark Pestrella, director of LA County Public Works.
“It smells bad. We all understand that,” said Holly Mitchell of the LA County Board of Supervisors.
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Unfortunately, although officials agree the smell is bad, it’s not bad enough.
“Based on the levels we’ve seen of the elevated levels, it’s not the point where we should call an emergency, but it is a nuisance and needs to be addressed,” Dr. Muntu David, LA County Health Commissioner, said.
Although the concentrations of hydrogen sulfide are increased, they are not considered to be hazardous to health, according to the officials. City and county leaders said they would make a declaration of harassment, provide money for things like procuring air filters or air purifiers for residents, and expect that order to be in effect by Monday.
However, for some local residents, the declaration of harassment is inconvenient and feels like living under a new type of lock.
“It’s more than a nuisance to be honest. We have to keep our windows closed, for example, and even with the windows closed the smell penetrates. Me and my mom have headaches every day. We wake up with a headache, nosebleeds, sore throats. So it was really bad, ”said Julisa Gonzalez, Carson resident.
Thousands of local residents have already complained about getting sick, and officials said they rely on local residents to report when and where the smell is worst.
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A citizens’ meeting is scheduled for Monday at 4.30 p.m. to discuss the topic.