ADELAIDE Street resident Terry Cooke says he is woken at 6am each day by a line of noisy trucks waiting for the gates to open at a construction and demolition recycling facility at the end of his street.
The High Wycombe resident said it signalled the start of another day of responsibility, fear and trepidation.
“First thing I check with my wife is whether all the doors are locked from the inside,” he said.
“We have to make sure our grandchildren can’t get outside because when the fully laden trucks start thundering down the road, it is not safe.”
Mr Cooke said a truck passed his home every 3.7 minutes.
“Ten per cent of these trucks are uncovered loads, exposing dust and creating fallen debris,” he said.
“We live constantly with the dust around us in our homes, outside our homes, everywhere.
“The recycling plant has mounds of product up to 40m high which is not water suppressed, so when the winds blow it is everywhere.”
Mr Cooke said friends and relatives would not come to his home.
“They don’t want to come over for a barbecue because of the health risks,” he said.
“The dust is in our food and we breathe it every minute of every hour of every day.
“Is this the life of a person on a residential street?
“How will government departments and politicians justify their inaction when there is a serious accident or someone falls very ill?”
Lot 20 Adelaide St Community Awareness Group spokeswoman Lisa Cooper said she had written to Health Minister John Day, Transport Minister Bill Marmion and Forrestfield MLA Nathan Morton about residents’ concerns stemming from the recycling facility operated by G&G Corp Asset Management at 501 Adelaide Street.
Ms Cooper presented a deputation on behalf of Jacaranda Springs residents at the Shire of Kalamunda’s council meeting on Monday last week. “Whilst our group’s focus was originally on the contaminated site at Lot 20 Adelaide Street, we are also trying to bring awareness to the dust and truck issues that Jacaranda Springs’ residents are facing on a daily basis due to this facility’s operations and complete lack of regard to our community,” she said.
“Perhaps the Environment Minister can explain how such a facility received approval to operate directly next to a residential estate when it is clearly evident, the proponent is not complying with their licence conditions to ensure dust does not spread beyond the boundary of their premises?
“The dust is covering people’s vehicles, outdoor settings and their laundry.”
Ms Cooper said independent testing found the presence of silica and called on the Shire of Kalamunda to do dust and air quality testing on behalf of residents.
“We want the Shire of Kalamunda to work with the Department of Environment Regulation (DER) and the City of Swan to achieve the best possible outcome for residents,” she said.
“We don’t believe a construction and demolition recycling facility should be operating in a residential area, considering this does not meet the Environmental Protection Authority’s own guidelines on distance from the nearest sensitive receptor.
“It is already clearly evident that the DER have very limited powers with regard to controlling the dust issue at the recycling facility, so what hope is there that the DER will be able to control any dust issues that may arise at the toxic Lot 20 Adelaide Street site if Wasterock Pty Ltd are given a licence to remediate it?”
Ms Cooper said the contaminated landfill site at Lot 20 Adelaide Street was on hold at the request of Wasterock, although she had been advised the DER would finalise their works approval application this month.
Mr Morton said the Shire should have never allowed residential properties to be developed so close to industrial land.
“I have managed to have extra police patrols and officers with handhelds to try and mitigate the speeding of the trucks and the proponent previously gave a commitment to wet his loads more, as well as the street, to help with the dust,” he said.
“However, residents have told me the problem is only getting worse.
“I have written to the Environment Minister Albert Jacob a number of times about this issue and continue to work with his office to do as much as we can for residents.
“I have also written to the Shire of Kalamunda to request noise and dust monitors be put on Adelaide Street as soon as possible.”
“With some solid data as to what is actually happening on Adelaide Street I can better advocate to Government on behalf of the community and hopefully we can get something done about it.”
G&G Corp Asset Management declined to comment.