A mysterious overwhelming odour lingering in several towns across Pennsylvania has residents and officials baffled, and very frustrated.
Residents in Delaware County have been putting up with the stench for almost a month and it’s creating such a problem that local emergency services received more than a dozen calls about the smell in one day alone.
“It was overwhelming. I was afraid to smoke. I was like, where is this coming from? I literally thought the gas main had broken,” Glenolden resident Diana Delaney told CBS.
The smell moves from town to town with no discernible pattern and nobody is sure what has created it.
Some locals have described the odour as similar to fuel, while others have told local outlets it has a more distinct odour.
“It’s like a sulfur, smokey,” Glenolden resident Terry Pelham told CBS.
It’s not the first time the pungent odour has hit the area.
Fox News reported in October the same smell wafted through 25 different towns in Pennsylvania, even shutting down a school and some local businesses who couldn’t cope with the overwhelming scent.
Hazmat crews were called in to asses the stench at the time but couldn’t pin down the cause and they are still baffled over what is causing the odour again.
“The challenge we’re up against when you’re on the ground level is, the wind can be blowing in different directions, depending on where you are,” director of emergency services for Delaware County, Tim Boyce told the Philadelphia Inquirer.
“By the time someone gets to where the report came from, it might not smell anymore,” Mr Boyce added, stating that if the smell is man made, it’s only a matter of time before they find the culprit.
There are concerns that the stench could stem from an environmental issue or link back to a business covering up spills, so a collaboration of agencies from Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware have created The Odour Investigation Task Force to track down the cause.
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