Hazle residents unhappy about trucks hauling dredge, fly ash
By TOM RAGAN
Two different projects drew complaints from residents living near each project in Hazle Township and the board of supervisors listened as township residents made their feelings known Tuesday.
Trucks are hauling dredge on the Cranberry Road from Route 924 and residents living along the road are not too happy about the noise, speeding trucks and what they said is the violation of a time agreement of when the trucks haul the dredge.
The times set forth for hauling dredge on the Cranberry Road ban deliveries to the dredge site between 7:30 and 9:30 a.m. and between 2:30 and 4:30 p.m.
The problem, however, may be just a misunderstanding because local schools have been on twohour delays the past few days due to the cold weather snap.
One resident said she saw two trucks hauling dredge just after 3 p.m., which is a clear violation because students were being let off at a school bus stop at the same time.
The reason for the ban was to avoid dredge-hauling trucks and school buses on the road at the same time. Bill Gallagher, chairman of the supervisors' board, said the township is working out an agreement with the truck haulers and so far, things have improved.
"We'll take care of that first thing on (Wednesday) morning," board member Francis "Butch" Boyarski said.
Gallagher said state police have been patrolling the area and are looking at trucks that may be exceeding the speed limit posted along the road.
Truck haulers came under fire for another project in the township. Trucks have been hauling fly ash to fill a stripping hole near Jeddo and the complaints ranged from a choking, dust-covered air that is evident in the area to a smell described as a rotten egg stench.
The dust was described in colors. Some residents said it looked orange or reddish and another man thought it was yellowish.
The residents were from Oakdale, Jeddo and Middletown. One man said the dust was like ground glass and another said at times it looks as though a volcano erupted following truck deliveries.
Joe Zawatsky of Hazleton called the Standard-Speaker
and said he was driving over the Stockton Mountain on Sunday when he saw a large cloud of yellowish dust filling the air around the stripping hole.
"This was bad, really bad, like a blast had just occurred," Zawatsky said.
Others at the meeting described the ground and snow that recently fell as being coated with a reddish powder-like substance.
Another man talked about an orange glaze on his windows.
Gallagher and other supervisors gave a number for a PennDOT contact for anyone who wanted to complain about the dust being kicked up by the trucks hauling fly ash from the New Jersey area.
Supervisor Anthony "Midge" Matz gave out a number for a contact at the Bureau of Mines. The board said the state had approved the permit that has been allowing the hauling of the material in that area. The PennDOT number is 826 2386 and the Bureau of Mines number is 621-3118.
"They have a state permit for that (project)," Gallagher said, and added, "We are trying, but our enforcement powers are limited."