Unknown chemical gives neighborhood odor issue
By CASSIE MITCHELL, Summer Intern
An unknown material was apparently dumped into the Greencastle sewage system Sunday, George Russell, Greencastle wastewater superintendent, said. The incident required both fire and sewage departments to investigate.
Russell said a material such as mineral spirits with an odor similar to paint thinner was dumped into a sewage line located near Madison and Green streets.
The fire department received three phone calls yesterday reporting the smell, starting at around 10 a.m.
"We monitored 10 to 12 manholes," Russell said. He said they narrowed it down to one manhole around Madison and Green streets which they ended up flushing around 1 p.m.
After the manhole had been flushed with about 1,000 gallons of water, the smell had disappeared, he said. Water levels had returned to normal by 5 p.m.
Russell said the reason the smell traveled so far was due to the material being dumped at the beginning of a sewer line.
"I don't think it was much [that was dumped], but it was a bad location," he said. "The good part is that it's gone. The bad part is that we don't know what it was."