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Putrid Piles Of Horse Droppings Bake Under A Scorching Sun In Old City

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Sometimes the horses miss the baskets, leaving manure to fry on the  hot street. (credit: Paul Kurtz)

Sometimes the horses miss the baskets, leaving manure to fry on the hot street. (credit: Paul Kurtz)

Paul Kurtz Paul Kurtz
Paul Kurtz is a Philadelphia native who has been working as a reporter...
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By Paul Kurtz

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - If you can fry an egg on a sidewalk, just think what the oppressive heat is doing to other items, such as horse manure.

On the streets of Old City, the air has been thick with the odor of horses and the waste they leave behind.

“It just smells,” one man said. “Smells like a dead person. Unbearable…because they don’t bring no water down here to rinse it out, so it just sits there until it dries up and breaks into the sun.”

A tourist attendant near 5th and Market has seen and smelled worse.

“I had somebody come up here on Market Street, and underneath the horses’ butt is a bag…And the lady that was on the bag right there and just tilt the bag over and put all the dookee in the street,” he recalls. “And just kept it moving. She did that with a customer on her carriage, and I had to clean it up.”

It’s the carriage drivers job to clean up the mess, but streets department trucks also come through Old City twice a day.

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