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Old 10-12-2011, 09:40 PM
1 posts, read 6,514 times
Reputation: 14


this has been going on for about the past 6 months, the neighbors that live directly behind us have been burning all kinds of stuff, sometimes we can smell wood smoke, but, quite often there are many other extremely disgusting and nauseating smells- like the smell of plastic, ammonia, charcoal fluid, and some of the smells we cannot identify, very rotten and sour smelling. All in all, the continual burning of whatever it is that they continue to burn in there fireplace/woodstove, well, the smoke and the odor has completely saturated our home, our clothes dryer, the odor is so foul that it makes me sick to my stomach and dizzy on a daily basis. Fresh air? What's that? Practically everytime we open a door or a window to let fresh air in, here it comes again, the horrible smell that burns our nose and throat(when you take a breath), burns our eyes, makes us nauseated and dizzy. It has become such a problem that it has completely turned our home into a place that we can no longer enjoy, not to mention the concerns that we have regarding what all the smoke and odors are doing to the health of us and our dogs. We already went "the SW Clean Air Agency" route, and, well, lets just say that they were not much help at all, the fire department wasn't able to do much the several times that we called - re; "our home being surrounded by such thick extreme amounts of smoke some nights that you'd think our house was on fire", asking them to please come check it out and can they possibly make it stop? Nope!! No help on that route either, etc., etc.. So, I guess it's not against the law in the state of Washington and the city of Vancouver, to just go on ahead and pollute the hell out of your neighbors and the surrounding neighborhood, the birds in the trees, with all of the smoke that you and your fireplace and it's chimney can produce, and even though you are a complete nuisance and you are making your neighbors physically sick, hey! it's no big deal, who likes fresh air anyhow? I mean really, why would you care about all of the pollution that you are producing, especially if you know that you can do as you please' because the very agency that is supposed to regulate and enforce the laws pertaining to "Clean Air" doesn't do it's job, and let's people who break the law get away with it!!
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Old 10-15-2011, 12:11 PM
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
19,595 posts, read 35,901,464 times
Reputation: 18999
It is impossible to advise, not knowing your location. It is illegal to burn garbage, and SWCAA - Clark Burning Info and / or your fire marshal (county or city, depending on your location) will get this handled. They are very proactive and stiff enforcers... You apparently haven't found the best 'Bird-dog' yet... They must be out enforcing!
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Old 10-21-2011, 09:05 PM
18 posts, read 46,455 times
Reputation: 26
I concur with StealthRabbit. I had a neighbor just two years ago who burned all kinds of nasty things. I had to call a couple of different offices, but I believe I began with the city general number to connect me to someone who came out twice and it was taken care of. They never burned that stuff again. I'm guessing they were fined. I never asked though. I do know they are strict on burning things in the city outside of wood in a fireplace. If you are rural, I'm not sure about the laws there.
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Old 10-21-2011, 09:20 PM
Location: Connecticut
1,143 posts, read 1,700,349 times
Reputation: 1337
i do not live in the state of washington but i do have a similar problem with my neighbor in connecticut - he installed a pellet stove and although he only burns pellets the smell of burning pine gets into my house - i did find out that he did not install the pipe to vent out the smoke according to the town regulations - im not sure if you have a similar situation with your neighbor
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Old 10-24-2011, 05:04 PM
1,981 posts, read 2,952,029 times
Reputation: 1555
From my experience, the SWCAA is over aggressive. They stopped by my place no less than 4 times following a BBQ.
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Old 11-11-2012, 12:11 AM
Location: Seattle, WA
2 posts, read 7,065 times
Reputation: 11
Suzanna I feel your pain
I live in Silver Lake, WA- which technically is Everett just outside of Mill Creek. I have a very similar problem with a neighbor(s) who burn all year long. We bought our brand new first home last June and sadly didn't realize we would have this problem with smoke. I have no idea where exactly it is coming from but it fills our neighborhood and then somehow gets into the house! I get terrible headaches from it and a scratchy throat. So if people say this is allergies or mold or because my house isn't up to date with windows/doors, you are delusion, its a brand new house.
I have tried to contact as many agencies as I possibly can and they are all impossibly rude and no help!
I started with the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency who told me to contact my local Fire Dept. I contacted the Fire department who said to contact the clean air agency....nice. So I contacted Clean Air again and they said no, contact Fire department. So i did again and they said there was nothing they could do but I could try calling 911 and reporting it but its not in their jurisdiction. Unbelieveable.
I've tried tweeting Komo news and King news with not even a reply on the issue. I even tried contacting your agency SWCAA asking if they had any advice on who to contact or what else I could do and they copied and pasted the info from PSCAA’s website to contact 911.
I have a feeling they really don't care so why does PSCAA even exist if they aren't going to help. Beyond disgusted.
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Old 11-11-2012, 09:32 PM
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
19,595 posts, read 35,901,464 times
Reputation: 18999
Originally Posted by met163 View Post
Suzanna I feel your pain
I live in Silver Lake, WA- ... so why does PSCAA even exist if they aren't going to help. Beyond disgusted.
To COLLECT fees from Businesses HUGE fees... yet another legacy to our unelected governor christine (in her previous job of BUILDING huge government bureacracy. SHE'S GOOD Wait for her full blown CARB, will cost WA (YOU) 100's of millions / yr... NO BENEFIT to you or environment that we couldn't have done for FREE.

BTW... have you talked with the neighbors? That is a good first step. Since I'm a 100% wood heat person, I am sensitive to the neighbors and wind direction, so some days we go cold. It was 48F in the house for a couple days recently (inversion).

It is usually QUITE possible to work these things out. WithOUT lawyers / arrest / court / yrs of grief.

I have also had to move a few times due to NOT being able to work stuff out. (Barking dogs everytime for me, and always in WA... never had the problem w; independent neighbors in my previous places... WY, CO, NE). I'm a farm kid, so I can't stand seeing a dog penned up in a yard or house.
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Old 11-11-2012, 11:46 PM
9,932 posts, read 9,025,025 times
Reputation: 18373
I hope the OP reports this to authorities. Burning anything besides wood or products designed for fireplaces or stoves is illegal and toxic. Would be fun to watch the hazmat trucks knock on their door in their yellow suits. As for the people who are burning, I'm still shocked by the stupidity of some people. Bad enough their neighbors have to smell it but the toxins inside the home could kill them.
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Old 11-12-2012, 03:01 PM
Location: Full Time Resident of City of Asheville
492 posts, read 725,746 times
Reputation: 681
This could be more illegal activity, such as a meth lab, if you smell chemical odors. Ask locals authorities to check into a possbile meth lab in operation.
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