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A farm has been sniffed out as the source of a funky smell that’s been bothering people in Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge since Thursday.
The rancid odour generated over 200 calls to the Surrey ECOMM dispatch centre, including 35 calls to 911 yesterday.
Residents complained the air smelled like faeces or rotten cabbage, while some pointed fingers at a sewage treatment plant across the Fraser River in Langley or believed there was a gas leak in their neighbourhood. Others took to Twitter and Facebook to complain about the nauseating stink.
The barrage of complaints had staff from Fortis BC, the Maple Ridge fire department, the district’s public works department and Metro Vancouver driving across Pitt Meadows, Maple Ridge and even over the Port Mann Bridge to check pump stations, sewage pipes and a landfill to pinpoint the source of the stench.
Fire chief Dane Spence said people need to stop calling 911 to report the smell.
“We got a whole lot of calls,” said Spence.”But looks like they’ve narrowed it down to an industrial property.”
Metro Vancouver’s air quality team has determined the fetid funk is coming from a farm where manure was recently sprayed.
The extra warm weather and light winds enhanced the odour.
Airport manager Glenn Ralph was rather shocked to hear the smell generated so many complaints.
“It’s agricultural land so farmers fertilize it,” Ralph said.
“This is what happens. It’s not pleasant. But it’s farm country…go out to Chilliwack and see what it smells like there. It’s a farmer doing what farmers do.”
A silage crop for feeding cattle will be planted on the recently fertilized fields.