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Residents learn Bridgeton Landfill had problems in 1990s

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BRIDGETON, MO (KTVI)-- About 100 people showed up for a meeting about the Westlake Landfill at the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 513 building in Bridgeton Thursday night.

All of the residents were anxious to hear more about the Bridgeton landfill that`s causing a great deal of controversy in the community.  Residents listened closely as the Missouri Coalition for the Environment spoke out about new problems. Residents say the information was shocking, coalition leaders Ed Smith and Dawn Chapman say the group found historical EPA documents that show a fire occurred at the landfill in 1995. The biggest concern is where the fire was located, its reportedly closer to the radioactive site than the larger fire currently under review.

"It`s going to be a sad day in this community someone dropped the ball on protecting u," said Chapman.

"What we found out over the weekend is and there was a fire in the 90`s close to the current fire at the landfill," said Smith.

The new revelation adds to the issues surrounding the soldering waste in the south quarry and its expansion towards a radioactive area at the site.

Bridgeton Landfill, the owner of the site agreed to build an isolation barrier to cap the area and create a 1,000 foot long trench to improve monitoring to keep the fire from making contact with the radioactive waste.

Missouri State Rep Bill Otto says EPA work stopped because of the government shutdown is back on track.

"They're getting back to work in the office and will resume the work they were tasked to do with the landfill," said Otto

Bridgeton Landfill LLC released the following statement:
"We're eager to resume work with  the EPA in conjunction with state agencies to begin the next stage of the construction."

The Pattonville Fire Protection District along with St. Louis County Councilman Steve Stenger and representatives from County Executive Charlie Dooley's office attended the meeting. Organizers are calling on residents to note odor issues and contact their local politicians to make a change.

"Were in trouble we need help we need help from our elected officials," Chapman said

The Missouri Coalition for the Environment wants management of the landfill project moved to the Army Corps of Engineers, their next meeting set for November 21st.

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