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What is that smell? Cedarburg residents want answers

Posted at 9:01 PM, Jul 10, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-10 23:32:41-04

CEDARBURG — A stinky situation in Cedarburg has people in one part of the city wondering what exactly they are smelling.

“Sewage,” said resident Jen Lane.

“It smells like a wet dog,” said Lauren O’Brien. “I was going to say poop.”

“Decomposing vomit,” said Simon Peschong, who works nearby.

“Sulfury, like eggs coming from hell or something,” said Hannah Walls, who also works nearby.

People said it has been going on for weeks. Mainly in the south part of the city, but the smell has made it all the way to Washington Avenue by the Piggly Wiggly and Starbucks.

“I can smell it through my car,” said Peschong.

“It's been probably like a month, at least,” said Lane.

Earlier Wednesday, the city released this statement:

“A private company in the City had a pipe break in their Flow Equalization Tank and because of that broken pipe, it is giving off an offensive smell to its surrounding areas.

"City staff has been in contact with the company and they are doing everything they can to fix the issue and put an end to the smell.

However, the pipe itself isn’t scheduled to be fixed until Sunday, July 14th, so the smell may persist until that time.”

The city told TODAY’S TMJ4 to contact Kemps, the dairy plant, for more information.

Wednesday night, a spokesperson for Kemps said they are not sure where the smell is coming from.

Kemps released a statement:

“We are aware of the unpleasant odor at the Cedarburg, Wis. plant. While not a human health issue, we understand the inconvenience it may be causing those in our community. We are working diligently to correct the situation. We are partnering with a third-party consultant to help identify the root cause and will work with our team to provide a solution. We take great pride in being a responsible organization within Cedarburg and will take the necessary steps to remedy the situation as soon as possible.”

But for families living downwind, they just want the smell to end.

“Definitely something that I am not happy about,” said Lane.

“They should get on it,” said O’Brien.

Even her 4-year-old son knows something is off in his neighborhood.

“It smells like a wet dog. I was going to say poop.” — Cedarburg resident Lauren O’Brien

“It smells like manure,” shouted Jack O’Brien.

He said he has to hold his nose when the smell is outside his home.

Kemps said with the experts that came in earlier Wednesday they hope the air will be better by Thursday. But they still haven’t pinpointed the specific cause of the stench.