A Current and Future Danger to Health
Summary of 311 Complaints
The following open records request was filed to the City of Dallas:
I hereby request all air pollution related 311 complaints made in 75212 from 2010 to date. I would like the information to include the address/location of the complaint, if the complaint involved health related impacts, if the complaint was due to odor/smells, if the complaint mentions dust, smoke or other visible emissions, and the time of day the complaint was made. If the complaint did include any of the information above, I would like the original copy of the complaint to see the original language submitted to 311.
There were 75 air pollution complaints filed in 75212 between 2010 and 2022. Of those complaints, 21 have notes that specifically mention GAF, visible emissions, health concerns or other comments related to how inappropriate and hazardous GAF is to the neighborhood.
Complaints Reflect SOx Nuisance Conditions
Lacking monitoring and reliable modeling, one must solely rely on the years of complaints from residents and regulators to confirm GAF’s Sulfur Dioxide is indeed causing nuisance conditions with its pollution.
GAF has a four-decade long history of complaints about “burning match” “rotten egg” or just “asphalt” odors that reflect the prevalence of its Sulfur Dioxide pollution along the Singleton Corridor.
Quotes from the 311 complaints related to smell:
311 Complaints related to dust and smoke:
Residents Complaints Are On the Rise
GAF has caused and is causing a condition of nuisance, air pollution and adverse impacts as defined by municipal and state law. There have been 80 air pollution complaints in District 6 since October 2020 and at least 50 of those complaints are on Singleton Boulevard or streets adjacent to GAF.
Resident Testimonials Reveal Adverse Impacts Living Close to GAF
Over the past year, door-to-door volunteers for Singleton United/Unidos solicited testimonials about GAF’s operations from residents in the three neighborhoods directly adjacent to the factory. Resident comments about their own harmful health effects and nuisance conditions reflect the impact of both PM and Sulfur Dioxide pollution from GAF:
“I have respiratory issues, and there is traffic because of the factory. I can smell and hear them let gas/dust out at night. The kids grew here, the family has had health and lung issues. Have come to reason that it may be because of the factory. Things haven’t changed. No signs of leaving. I came here for the schools in the area, not knowing the risks. I don’t want family near here. Daughter lives far and prefers being in that area.”
– Clementina Cortez
“I have a breathing problem. I am congested at night, eyes itching all the time, nose running sometimes. That smell makes you sick in the stomach”.
– Ruby Ross
“I have breathing problems, wheezing and congestion. All these years, living in the area, I have throat cancer and thyroid problem”.
– Evelyn Ramos
“Why wasn’t it closed last time we pushed to close it? There is stinky odor, they don’t hire any community members. I want the EPA and the code department to do better. The neighborhood already has diabetes and heart failure. Asthma, dizziness”.
– Kenneth Hogg
“I drove DART buses and smelled smokestack. The smell bothers me, my son has asthma. I want more resources for children.”
– James Odie
“Breathing is bad. I have had to go to the doctors for an inhaler. September I went to the doctor because I had breathing problems.”
– Sabrina Cox
A West Dallas resident complained to an elected official that the smoke from that fire “caused my throat to become scratchy, coughing …. The smoke was so thick it hovered over all of West Dallas. The smell was horrific, very strong & lingering. You could smell it from loop 12 & all over West Dallas & I’m sure the lingering included other local surrounding areas in our city. The fire department said by it being cold outside, it causes the materials burning & the smoke in the air to continue to stay low where it affects us when breathing.” (Source: email to Sen. Royce West, 2017)
An explosion and fire at GAF could be much worse. GAF is much closer to residential neighborhoods than is the Sunshine metal yard.
For GAF to do business in West Dallas, it must have those on-site storage tanks, and because of that, it must impose a 24/7/365 threat of catastrophic accidents on the surrounding residents.
Next: GAF is Non-Conforming