Hawkins Residents Angry Over Tire Dump - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

3/25/07-Longview

Hawkins Residents Angry Over Tire Dump

Residents of a Hawkins neighborhood are voicing their concerns about a mountain of tires that they say is growing every day.   It started as a trickle, and now some Hawkins apartment residents say they have an unsightly mountain of old tires practically in their back yards.  But that's not what worries them most! The tires began to accumulate in an open field on Highway 14, just a half mile south of Highway 80. 

It started with a few tires, but over the past three weeks, residents of the Hatfield Apartments saw it grow into thousands.  "You see nothing but tires.  I don't want to look at tires every morning when I wake up," said apartment resident James Woodson.

"My first thoughts were the fire hazards if something were to happen and they'd catch these apartments on fire quick.  It's a nice area to live in and to have the tires built up makes it look terrible," said apartment manager Jessica Kincaid.

Through Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, T.C.E.Q., an area businessman began collecting the tires to grind them down to be used as fuel or roadway material, but locals have seen no grinding, just a pile getting bigger.  It's spring time and that means rain and rain means insects and these tires will be the perfect place for mosquito's to breed.

"Trouble, basically just a breeding ground for mosquitos and you never know when a grass fire is going to spark and that's going to burn for who knows how long," Woodson said.

"Since West Nile is running rampant and the bugs are already so bad out here it makes it twice as bad," Kincaid said.

"They have guidelines that they are governed by with T.C.E.Q. to keep the mosquito population down they have a spraying program twice a week, and a lot of fire safety involved," said Hawkins fire Marshall John Jones.

Local authorities have received dozens of calls from residents, and are very aware of area concerns.  "I wouldn't necessarily be pleased with it.  I don't know if there's plans for a privacy fence," Jones said.

But so far no law has been broken, just a mountain of tires that a community wants to go away.  "Eventually there going to be up on this fence line obviously they're going to run out of room," said Kincaid.

Hawkins authorities are checking with T.C.E.Q., to see what the tire limit is for the holding area and whether the limit has been exceeded.

Bob Hallmark, Reporting.  bhallmark@kltv.com

 

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