Residents concerned about cleanup at Monolyte Labs

SLAUGHTER, LA (WAFB) - The massive cleanup operation following the fire at Monolyte Labs has sparked some new concerns from those who live near the plant.

The Fire happened on Monday, November 19.

It was a sight homeowners near Monolyte Labs in Slaughter won't soon forget, flames shooting through the roof of the facility, first responders waking them in the middle of the night.

"Oh mercy, we were out here at the corner and the smoke was just billowing," Jill Rinehart said.

"The police came down the street and told us we have to evacuate," Ed Hall Sr. said.

One week later, the road that runs along Monolyte is still closed, which has caused an inconvenience for locals who live behind the lab.

"We've had to change the route a little bit, get around the block to get to our subdivision but the cleanup is going pretty good, I guess. I don't know a whole lot about it down there," Greg Winans said.

Cranes are picking apart burnt metal. Garbage trucks are removing debris and vacuum trucks are still sucking spilled chemicals from nearby ditches. Plant workers told 9News the liquids at the lab were not harmful to residents or the environment. But some homeowners are not convinced.

"They're digging up all the soil out of the ditches where all the water went and all that to get all the contamination so it must be something pretty toxic," Hall said.

While plant owners have been in touch with town leaders and the news media, Jill Rinehart who lives one block behind the lab says the company has not made any attempts to contact her. That has her worried.

"We've had very little communication, none, no communication so we don't know what all is going on down there and we don't know the dangers. We know they're cleaning up but it just makes us wonder how we will be affected," Rinehart said.

A spokesperson from the United States Environmental Services is expected to be at the Slaughter Town Hall meeting to give residents an update on the cleanup process. The meeting is scheduled for Tuesday at 6:30 p.m.

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