by Kim Powell
BIG SPRING - "It's turned into a small little lake of just sewage," James Fite said, after reaching out to NewsWest 9.
Spewing human waste continues to stink up one Big Spring neighborhood near FM700 and Columbia Drive. What was once a place where kids used to go exploring, has now turned into a massive health hazard.
"There are tons of kids in our neighborhood. We have kids that have built tree houses out in that area, and you can't walk out there now," Fite said. "It's got to have a major cleanup. I mean, you have no idea what kind of disease you could spread with this."
Residents say they have noticed the smell since February, but chalked it up to the new sewage treatment plant that is just up the road. Until recently, when one man decided to take a walk and discovered a lake of waste.
"You see toilet paper, you see tampon applicators, you even see condoms," Fite said.
Anything that gets flushed down the toilet is ending up right here, and it's been here so long, that even algae is beginning to grow.
But the worst part about it--the smell.
"What is very irritating is when the wind might shift and you might not smell it outside, it's still trapped in your house. You have to air out your whole house. You are smelling raw sewage in your home," said Fite.
"It's been bad, especially at night. I mean, it's almost sickening to your stomach to step outside and smell it," Victoria Walker, another upset resident, said.
Neighbors in the area say they have told city officials about the problem numerous times, but have been getting the run around.
"The city doesn't do anything about the water problems or the sewage problem. It smells all the time," Walker said.
However, Johnny Womack, the Public Works Director, says he didn't find out about this problem until we called him.
"We're working as diligently as we possibly can," Womack said.
Womack says the pouring sewage is caused by a broken bypass pump, that was temporarily put in for construction of the new plant.
"So right now, staff and contractors are working to get the pump operating correctly and once it's done, it should be ready to go," Womack said.