Carlsbad residents notice unpleasant smell - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Carlsbad residents notice unpleasant smell

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CARLSBAD (NEWS 8) — An unpleasant smell in Carlsbad has become too much to bear for some residents.

People living near the Encina Water Pollution Control Facility have noticed the strong odor more and more lately.

“Never had a smell or anything until recently," said Jeff Jones who has smelled the foul odor in Carlsbad.

Residents say it is tough to go outside at times.

“When there’s not a lot of wind, you can really smell it," said Jones.

Jones described it as smelling like a sewer vent and he isn't the only one in this North County neighborhood noticing the scent.

On the NextDoor.com app, the community has been complaining for days, wanting to know where the bad smell is coming from.

“It can be a little overpowering sometimes," said Eric Backous.

Backous says he’s noticed it from the nearby Encina Wastewater Authority Plant, but it doesn't stop him and his dog Rosie from going outdoors.

“It’s a pretty distinct smell, so when the wind kicks up a certain way, it comes from that direction," said Backous.

“20-million gallons a day come through this plant - of raw wastewater," said Encina Wastewater Authority General Manager Michael Steinlicht who is getting to the bottom of the stench. "They are right, they are smelling something a little abnormal, because we have what you would call a 'plant upset' and when we have a 'plant upset,' we have a significant increase in odors."

He says those increases in odors overwhelmed the odor control system, as a result they immediately started replacing the carbon, which is helping subside the smell.

With contractors on site, the facility had one odor tower of three replaced and are actively working to stop smell.

Residents can’t wait but the process to pleasant smells is going to take more time.

The plant treats 8 billion gallons of wastewater a year.

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