July 3, 2014
Land is being cleared for a new development on Stony Point Road. Neighbors are upset about smoke and ash blowing from the construction site. They first started noticing the smoke on Tuesday.
They found ash in their cars, the smell of smoke in their houses, and a fine dusting of ash on Darden Towe Park.
Neighbor Frank Terrell says he saw it when he walked out that morning.
"Smoke was lying real low you could see it. It was almost like you had partial fog. The smell was awful and you had ashes flying all over the place."
Neighbor Renee Leake says she thought her house was on fire when she first smelled it.
“I smelled something burning i thought my house was on fire. I walked outside all of the smoke debris was blowing all through the air on my porch. I immediately called into the house and told my daughter and granddaughter to get out."
Her concern is for the overall safety of her family.
"My concern is all of this in the air so close to my house. I’m concerned about catching my house of fire if one of the leaves fly over and spark my house."
Staff at the Elks Lodge noticed the ash in their pool. But they say contractors heard about it and came by and asked what they could do to help.
The law for controlled burning allows for the burning of land clearing debris such as brush, stumps, trees, and other clean wood to be burned at the site.
The fire has to be attended at all times, and a 50 foot clearance is required around the pile.
The contractors appear to be following the law, but that doesn't make Terrell worry any
"My wife chokes very easily. It hasn't bothered her yet, but I’m worried about it."
This isn't the first time neighbors of construction sites have complained about the smoke and ash from debris burning.
One nearby resident was told the burning will happen at this site during the next two weeks. As far as they can tell, there is not much they can do.
The developers say while they have no official response, they were unaware of complaints and are checking into it to see what they can do to address concerns.