Ector County residents 'burned' out by neighbor's trash

Ector County residents 'burned' out by neighbor's trash

ECTOR COUNTY, TX (KWES) - A property owner in Odessa could soon be facing a lawsuit by his own neighbors.

This after they say he's illegally dumping on his own property and it's affecting their health.

The weeds are well over 3 feet tall, this alone, is already violating several health codes but as one neighbor explains this is just one of her many concerns on her long list.

Residents, who prefer to remain anonymous, say the property owner claims to have a tree service. But for the last year and a half, they have been asking him to stop burning mattresses, furniture and trash saying the fires are reaching electricity cables.

"The water has been so hot that when it hits the ground, it evaporates." said one of the residents. "You can watch the embers fly over your house and all you can do is sit there an hope that one of those embers is not hot."

Neighbors add they are not only worried about their homes but their health as well.

"We've had paramedics tell us they even beat us to calling the fire department because they've seen the fire from mile and a half away. It makes people sick I got pneumonia."

Residents say no matter how hard they try, there is nothing they can do to avoid breathing in smoke.

"It's going to come in, there's nothing you can do about it, you can burn all the candles, you can spray all the Febreeze you want, there's nothing you can do about it. It's coming in," a resident said.

Neighbors say they've filed several complaints against the property owner.

The Environmental Department says they lack manpower as only three environmental officers are monitoring the county's 950 square miles.

"I want the man's tree service shut down," a resident said.

"I just hope they put a stop to him before he does contaminate something that can't be cleaned up," said another resident.

The Environmental Department says dumping on your own property is illegal and depending on the violation you can serve up to six months in jail.

Neighbors emphasized they're fighting for their health and will continue to do so even if it means filing a lawsuit.

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