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Tag Archive | "hazard"

An unsightly mess


Shaner Ave. (Nelson Township) between 17 and 18 Mile Roads has recently been turned into an unsightly mess. The mess is not only in the ditches along the road, but also left on the properties of current residents. Consumers Energy and the Kent County Road Commission came through with heavy equipment and cut a long wide path of trees and brush. This ugly defacing of Shaner was done most recklessly and without regard for the properties on which their work was done. Several property owners have lost large trees, which now lay on their properties in large hunks or piles. Heavy equipment was used to mow down brush and topple trees. In some of the areas where work was done, a lot of debris was left. Tree trunks and uprooted trees lay on the wide swath of loose and lumpy mounds of water-soaked soil that was also dug up. Pieces of shredded brush lay on the narrow shoulder of the road, being a hazard for bikers, walker, and joggers. Ditches were damaged where the heavy equipment went on and off the road, which will result in water backing up into residents’ yards when it rains, if the ditches aren’t repaired. This all was done to accommodate the development project, White Pine Ridge, now in progress on Shaner and 18 Mile Roads. We residents on Shaner appear to have to deal with the ugly side of progress at work. In the beginning, Nelson Township officials appeared to believe that the condominium development would give something back to the community. So far it has only been costly for the Township, particularly in attorney’s fees. This is only the beginning of many adverse effects that the development will have on residents along Shaner and 18 Mile Roads. I ask: will it be progress or progressive devastation to a peaceful quiet and uncrowded rural community?

Mary Stidham, Nelson Township

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Be wary of road waste

The Kent County Sheriff Department is warning volunteers who pick up trash along side the roadways to be careful. There is a  new and dangerous hazard to watch out  for—potentially toxic debris discarded from methamphetamine labs.
Meth is a highly addictive stimulant that can be made using common household chemicals and equipment and common cold remedies containing ephedrine or pseudoephedrine (such as Sudafed and Actifed).
Clean-up crews who come across materials used to make the drug can be burned or their lungs damaged from inhaling fumes.  Undersheriff Jon Hess says that if you encounter any of the signs of a meth lab, leave the area immediately and call 911 or MDOT. Do not touch anything if you suspect it may be meth lab waste. The waste can be extremely dangerous and may even be booby-trapped.  Entire labs can be found in tool boxes, coolers, or other storage containers. Mobile meth labs are becoming more common, and labs are sometimes run out of car trunks and RVs and discarded on our roadways.
Clues indicating a dumpsite include:
•    empty bottles attached to a rubber hose
•    the smell of ammonia
•    coffee filters stained red or containing a white powder residue
•    garbage bags with cat litter (can contain deadly gases and are sometimes called “death bags”)
•    corroded propane tanks
•    empty or used alcohol products
•    numerous empty cold medicine and diet pill bottles or blister packs
•    unused matches without striker plates
Don’t try to remove unknown or suspected toxic substances. Notify MDOT or the police of the location of these items immediately.
“Meth lab waste is very serious. Your safety comes first!” says Hess.

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Kent County Credit Union
Ray Winnie


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