RDP residents fed up with nearby animal rendering plant
There's a new rift between citizens of Riviere des Prairies and the operators of a company that transforms animal remains in the area.
The company, Sanimax, has been around since the 1950s, but there are more and more houses being built in the area, and the population is becoming less tolerant of the foul odour emanating from the plant.
Every summer, residents living close to the Sanimax plant at 9900 Maurice-Duplessis Blvd. complain they have to put up with the stench derived from recycling animal carcasses.
“It comes from here, it comes from there, it comes from everywhere,” said local resident Antonella Levita of the odour. “It's where the wind blows and that's not fair,”
This week, the indignation turned into anger when a delivery truck that was bringing carcasses lost some of its load near the plant.
People here say it's not the first time it happens and they blame the company for not respecting rules requiring that such trucks be covered by a tarp.
“It's very disturbing and also for the fact that this is the third time that it happens in the last month. Is this the image we want for RDP?” said resident Theo Vecera.
The company claims that on average, 20,000 trucks carry animal remains every year to the plant, and that cases like this week's spill are relatively rare.
“We have incidents like that happened tuesday night, we have incidents four to five time a year,” said Sanimax general manager Eric Caputo.
The company says the driver involved was a third party who didn't work for Sanimax, but the incident only served to remind locals how difficult it is to live close to the plant.
Housing developments are inching closer to the plant.
“We were caught by surprise and very disappointed with the consistent smell and the consistent problems we're having with Sanimax,” said Vecera.
Sanimaxis already facing fines of up to $800,000 over environmental violations but the company has decided to fight those fines in court against the borough.
“You've seen the trucks, there's a lack of respect for the environment. Call, don't hesitate, call, we put it out there,” said borough councillor Manuel Guedes.