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Neighbors Say ‘Rotting Meat’ Smell Lingers After Warehouse Fire In South Jersey

Matt-Rivers-web-headshot Matt Rivers
Matt Rivers joined CBS 3 and The CW Philly’s Eyewitness News team ...
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By Matt Rivers

DELANCO, N.J., (CBS) — Those who live near the burned out warehouse are getting awful tired of flare-ups — and a “rotting meat” smell lingering in the air in South Jersey.

Another day, another flare-up at the now destroyed Dietz & Watson factory in Delanco. The fire sparked weeks ago (see previous story), but piles of debris still contain hidden hot spots and smells you might expect from a burned out meat factory.

“The first thing we noticed when we got on scene that the odor was very strong,” Chopper 3 Photographer Joseph Garvin said.

Garvin has looked down at this fire time and again from his perch behind the lens aboard Chopper 3. Today the flare-ups sent him back up into the clouds where no winds meant a calm of stink.

“Pretty much a very bad distinct odor and we’re at about 800 to a 1,000 feet over the damage,” Garvin said.

Back down on the ground, it was heavy equipment trying to clear debris that unearthed more flames, the resulting smell spreading for miles around.

“Take a ride from Delran all the way into Delanco and you just smell it,” neighbor Lyle Moyer said.

Moyer lives near the former factory and says the smell can be overwhelming. He and his neighbors are thankful for the ongoing cleanup and he for one is at peace with the steaming debris.

Dietz & Watson has been in touch with residents here giving them updates on their progress, but the cleanup here is not going to be easy. The company saying that crews out here have to deal with those remaining hot spots and twisted hunks of steel, so it could be some time before the smell out here begins to ease.

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