York & North Yorkshire

Smell from Yorwaste Harewood Whin landfill site

A strong odour from a waste processing site has left residents complaining of sore throats and eye irritation.

The Environment Agency said it had received "an awful lot" of complaints about the smell from Yorwaste's Harewood Whin facility near York.

Sue Wherrett, who lives in nearby Acomb, said a sulphur-like smell had been coming from the plant since the end of last year.

Yorwaste apologised for any "temporary odour" and was fitting new equipment.

'Breathing problems'

Ms Wherrett said: "It was making me and my immediate family choke.

"Other people in the village were complaining of sore throats, eye irritation, breathing problems and coughing - a multitude of things," she said.

Mark Scott, from the Environment Agency, said while there was evidence that low concentrations of landfill gas - a mixture of methane, hydrogen and other strong-smelling gases - was escaping from the site, it would not injure health.

"It is quite a strong odour and we expect Yorwaste to work hard and fast to get this problem fixed," he said.

In a statement, Yorwaste said new wells were being fitted in part of the Harewood Whin site to collect landfill gas.

"Until the work is completed there may be a temporary odour in the air, but we are working to complete this work as soon as possible," the firm said.

"In the meantime, we would like to apologise for any inconvenience this may cause to people in the vicinity of the site."

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