The state’s environmental watchdog is calling on members of the community to help it find the source of a toxic smell.
Residents in Kealba have complained about a “toxic, smokey chemical” smell coming from the area around the Kealba Landfill site in recent weeks.
One resident, who wished to remain anonymous said they have health concerns around the persistent smell.
“Over the past few weekends, every Saturday and Sunday there’s been this smokey chemical smell persistent throughout the whole day,” the resident said.
“Then on Monday and Tuesday we noticed a really strong chemical smell, which got worse at the evening went on.
“They both irritate the throat and make you want to cough.”
The resident said a number of neighbours had raised the alarm.
“We’ve lived near the landfill for over 10 years and it’s been pretty good, there’s never been anything like this.
“Other neighbours have mentioned it too, even people in St Albans. I even noticed on community Facebook page… a few people thought others had put something strong on their garden or their was a small burn off.”
Environment Protection Authority manager for the Western Region, Stephen Lansdell confirmed an investigation was active and asked for community assistance.
“EPA is investigating a number of recent reports of odour in the Kealba area, and is looking to members of the public to help track down the source,” Mr Lansdell said.
“EPA officers were investigating a cluster of reports from residents in mid to late October, possibly from an industrial source, but found it difficult to confirm the origin of the odour.
“There were six more reports from the public between 18 and 21 November, with callers describing the odour as a burnt smell, a chemical smell, and a smell like manure, which suggests the odours may be coming from several points of origin.
“The investigation is continuing, and members of the public can make a difference by reporting odour as soon as they notice it, by calling 1300 372 842.”
He said quick reports help to have EPA officers in the area before the odour can disperse, which gives them a chance to track it back to the source.