SPRINGDALE, Pa. — It’s a sight that left residents of Springdale speechless.
“When there was an implosion like all of a sudden the Earth shook and when the smokestack hit the ground it really shook,” said Georgia Navilliat.
The implosion of the two smokestacks at the former Cheswick Power Plant in June left dust, dirt and destruction in the community, even racking up state violations.
“The first implosion resulted in dust and other materials being spread onto people’s properties that’s a violation per DEP, so we did investigate that did some sampling and provided that information back to residents,” said Rep. Mandy Steele who represents the 33rd District.
Residents still receiving letters up until last month showing the residue found on their property was in fact contaminated. Now a second implosion to clear the site is scheduled for this Friday and Steele said the DEP is playing a much bigger role this time around.
“They have all the permits ready to go, they have worked closely with the Springdale Borough police department with Charah. Everyone is communicating and coordinating in the best way possible,” Steele said.
That includes helping those who can’t evacuate or don’t have transportation to get to safe locations. The evacuation zone expanded this time around and includes a shelter in place zone where Navilliat lives.
“I’m going to take our air conditioners bring them in, shut the windows and hopefully none of our windows break or anything,” Navilliat said.
But there are a number of residents who didn’t want to speak out on camera, concerned about the lack of accountability of Charah Solutions who owns the property.
They told Channel 11 damage reimbursement has not happened, it’s unclear how much more contaminated material is still in the power plant, and they will be taking those concerns to the Borough Council.
Channel 11 reached out to both the DEP and Charah Solutions for comment on Friday’s implosion, but did not hear back.
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