Update on burned Hawkins tire pile-up - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Update on burned Hawkins tire pile-up

By Philippe Djegal - email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - bio | email

HAWKINS, TX (KLTV) - Remember the massive tire fire last May off FM 14 in Hawkins? The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality hired a contractor shortly after the fire, to remove all of the tires and burned debris from the abandoned lot.

But, more than 5,000 tons of tires still remain, and neighbors say the pile of rubber is hurting their quality of life. Six months after raging flames of fire ravaged an abandoned field of tires, piles of rubber still remain.

"You open your window [and] they're just swarming on you," said Gloria Pullum, a Hawkins resident.

Pullum says the process to get rid of the tires is taking too long. She avoids going outside because every time she does, mosquitoes attack.

"'Til it kind of cooled off, but the summer was terrible," said Pullum. "It was really terrible."

"They need to take care of them, and they need to take care of them quickly because it's more of a health hazard for everyone - especially folks in this area," said Willie Dubois.

The process to clean all of this mess up began right away. The first step? To remove as much burned material as possible, which means ash, compost and all of the trash that accumulated there throughout the years. And, as of the last week of November, more than 60,000 tons of the shredded material has been removed from the site.

Bryan Hughes says the goal is to have all of this shredded material and all of those full tires removed by March 2010. Until then, according to representative Hughes, the removal of the pre-existing shredded material will be completed in the next 30 days.

But, for Willie Dubois...

"...as it warms back up over here, the mosquitoes will be here and they'll be here in swarms," he said.

"It's as if nobody cares," said Pullum.

They are fed up, with the clean up.

Representative Hughes says contractors plan on bringing a shredder onto the tire site to shred all of the remaining full tires. They say that will be quicker, than attempting to remove the tires in bulk.

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