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Letters to the Editor

Asphalt fumes and health risk?


(The) asphalt plant in Whistler which (Mr. Frank Silveri) continue(s) to operate in close proximity to the Cheakamus Crossing residential area makes life for its residents miserable and exposes public health to serious risk.

I am not going to assert now that the plant is operating illegally.

I hope that the court will make a just decision on this matter soon.

What I am going to do is inform (Mr. Silveri) about how...(the) plant is affecting specifically me.

For most people, bitumen fumes (they go directly in our windows each time when the plant produces asphalt) are first of all very unpleasant because of the terrible smell and their harmful effect on people's health is somehow delayed.

But for me, these fumes constitute direct and immediate danger. I am very allergic to asphalt fumes and they cause immediate intense headache and difficulties with breathing.

The additional problem is that my ability to breathe is affected by a spinal cord injury. I had already three asthmatic attacks caused by fumes from (the) asphalt plant and I am afraid that the next one could bring me to a state of asthmatic coma or even kill me.

I can understand (Mr. Silveri's postion). (He has) been doing a profitable, successful and socially useful business for many years and never asked to (have) a residential area just beside (the) plant site. I suppose that (Mr. Silveri) truly believes that asphalt manufacturing at the site is absolutely legal and (is) confident in (his) right to continue ... business there.

But the fact is that (Mr. Silveri is) poisoning people and it doesn't matter at all whether it is legal or not.

Do you think knowing that you kill me legally really matters to me? (Mr. Silveri) probably think(s) that bad smells are not a big deal, harmfulness of bitumen fumes is exaggerated and people can easily live with it...

Try to sleep with a good conscience at night knowing that you are doing your "legal" business on somebody else's suffering, pain and even death Mr. Silveri...

As for me, I am not afraid to die. I have already lived long enough and my current conditions do not make my life very enjoyable. So, if I die due to the next asthmatic attack caused by (the) asphalt plant...well, I hope that it will help people to force the shut down of (the) evil plant once and for all...

And while I am still alive, I will do my best to make people aware that (the) asphalt plant could very likely cause future diseases, birth defects and other deaths within the neighbourhood.

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