Company forced to fix unpleasant odor
Yona Gavino reports.Photo: Video by tmj4.com
MILWAUKEE - The Health Department has received complaints about a bad smell coming from a west side company for years.
“If I smell it, I don’t get too excited because I know it’s not really attracting customers to have that smell hanging around,” expresses Jesse Metzger, owner of Birdie’s Café.
Metzger tells TODAY’S TMJ4 he recently smelled the odor again a few days ago. It comes from Advanced Waste Services. Friday there was no trace of it in the air, but the Health Department claims they have received complaints as far back as 2006.
People in nearby neighborhoods describe the smell as garlicky or like a rotten egg smell. Some of them thought it was coming from the MillerCoors Brewery.
But actually, it wasn’t. In fact, even brewery employees have complained of the smell. Now the Department of Neighborhood Services has issued an order to the company to close the plant’s doors and windows when they’re treating waste. They were told to stop adding chlorine to the waste stream to hide the smell.
The company also has to hire a consultant to come up with a solution. Department of Neighborhood Services Commissioner Art Dahlberg elaborated on the details of the order.
“We have not verified how their operation is working today” expresses Dahlberg. “But I am assuming that if they haven’t done that today, that they will be initiating changes to their protocol and procedures.”
Still, this business owner is hoping it doesn’t drive away business.
“It’ll be a day or two that you smell it,” recounts Jesse Metzger. “And then you won’t smell it for a few weeks, so it’s sort of irregular, but very unpleasant.”
TODAY’S TMJ4 left messages with Mike Malatesta, President of Advanced Waste Systems, but our calls were not returned. Commissioner Dahlberg told us if the problems continue, the city could declare the company’s operation a public nuisance.