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Residents Risk Methane Explosion by Staying in Trailer Park

Birdsboro, Pa. – Residents of the Eddie Smith Trailer Park will be evicted if they don’t evacuate the property. The trailer park sits over 100,000 cubic yards of buried trash from a community dump that operated in the early part of the 20th century. The trailer park also is adjacent to the Pioneer Crossing Landfill owned by J.P. Mascaro & Sons, Harleysville, Pa.

When the risk of methane-fueled explosions became too great for human habitation in June 2002, Mascaro purchased the trailer park for $700,000 and gave the residents six months to move out. Mascaro also offered $8,000 for relocation expenses to the 14 families who were most threatened by the gas. Four residents remain at the trailer park. Mascaro says it will spend about $5 million to excavate the garbage and bury it in the landfill.