By Sylvia Gonzalez
ECTOR COUNTY - As the population grows in the Permian Basin, so does illegal dumping. If you travel to parts of West Odessa, you run across old mattresses, stoves and even dead cattle on the side of the road. Officials with the Ector County Health Department tell NewsWest 9, the entire county is aching from this problem.
"You have king size mattresses in the middle of the road, it's just horrible," one West Odessa Resident, said.
She's lived out in the county for over 20 years and she says the illegal dumping is getting out of control.
"It's not only yucky but it's dangerous. We have hit couches, we've hit refrigerators cause if you are coming at 4 o'clock in the morning and by the time you turn, you're right on it" she said.
West Odessa residents are not only upset with all the illegal dumping that's going on, they're also upset of all the dead animals they are dumping out here.
"How long was that horse there? It blew up and exploded, that horse was there for a long time, and we reported it because we knew what happens with the dogs, it's gross. The animals out here did away with it, but it was never picked up," she said.
Ted Yelley, Environmental Enforcement Officer with Ector County, says illegal dumping is a problem the entire county is facing.
"All the little towns around Odessa, just West Odessa seems to be the most convenient to get to. You just drive down West University and there you go, you're in West Odessa and there are many places out there that are available and accessible for dumping," Yelley said.
Yelley says it's hard to meet everyone's needs.
"We are well undermanned for the amount of problems that are out there. Right now, we are just like any other police department. We are so short handed, trying to take care of the mass amount of calls," Yelley said.
Anything over five pounds that is illegally dumped is considered a Class B Misdemeanor.