BRISTOL, Va. (WJHL) — Friday marks the last day to dump waste at the Bristol, Virginia Landfill.
The landfill’s closure follows months of complaints from Bristol residents regarding a stench that drifted from the location and throughout residential areas.
Bristol Virginia City Manager Randy Eads issued a statement Friday morning that stressed city leaders continue to work toward a solution aimed at alleviating the smell.
“There are additional steps that must occur to mitigate any residual odors in the safest and most environmentally friendly manner possible,” he said.
In an earlier timeline established in June, city officials had made it a goal to have the site closed by Sept. 12.
The news comes a little too late for some who made the hard decision to leave the city after they said the stench from the landfill caused too many health issues. Marsha Schorr said she had planned to retire in her Bristol home but had to move to Johnson City earlier this year.
“I was very sick. I had pneumonia a couple of times this year,” said Schorr. “My pulmonologist advised me to move out of Bristol because of my lung health. I do have to now go every 3 months for a lung scan. Which I never had to do before.”
Schorr said despite moving out of Bristol she will continue to fight for change surrounding the landfill for those who still live in the city. She said closing the landfill is a good first step, but that she wants more transparency from the city moving forward.
“I’m disappointed in the city council and DEQ for not enforcing their citations over the years for the landfill,” said Schorr. “It didn’t have to get to this point… Now the real work needs to begin to get the landfill fixed.”
The landfill accepted waste from various parts of Southwest Virginia. Smyth County Administrator Shawn Utt previously revealed that the county board of directors voted to send its trash to a site in Blountville — 12 miles farther from the Bristol landfill.