A Landfill Close To An Elementary School Attracts Mosquitoes Carrying West Nile
An open dump has formed near Kiser Elementary School in Dayton, Ohio. The Environmental Protection Agency has asked the Ohio Controlling Board to remove the waste. This is a particularly urgent public health matter since the collection of waste is attracting numerous mosquitoes, many of which have tested positive for the West Nile virus. Also the fact that the dump is located near a school full of children makes cleanup measures tremendously important. To make the situation worse, the dump is not an ordinary dump. In fact, the land containing all of the garbage used to belong to a private company called Quality Farms. This company agreed to accept unused beer, wine and soft drinks that were not labeled correctly and therefore needed to be discarded. This company offered to recycle the unused beverages; instead the beverages were ignored, which caused a swarm of mosquitoes to descend upon the area.
Initially Quality Farms claimed that the unopened beverages were going to be turned into animal feed and biofuels. But in the end the flawed products were stockpiled, which was in violation of many laws and EPA policies. There are currently more than five thousand beverages piled up on a four and a half acre patch of land. As you can imagine the scene has created quite an eyesore in the city of Dayton, and now parents of the children attending the nearby school are beginning to worry about mosquito-born diseases.
In September the local government worried about the large amounts of standing water located at the dump site since the water was attracting numerous mosquitoes. Apparently, several plastic structures containing the bottles and cans had ruptured, which flooded the area with “sticky” fluids. Many hazardous materials were also leaked. Although there have been no cases of the West Nile virus reported yet, mosquito traps near the area caught seventy mosquitoes that were carrying the disease.
Do you think that this company should pay for any medical bills related to cases of the West Nile virus that were contracted near the dump site?