Avondale Homes Plagued By Toxic-Smelling Fumes

(CBS) — It’s a smelly mystery on Chicago’s northwest side. A strange odor is wafting through homes.

CBS 2’s Jim Williams reports state and city officials have no answers for worried residents.

It’s been a nightmare for Sara Suh, her husband and their five-year-old daughter since last Monday. Windows are open – even with the chilly temperatures – and a fan is running.

The fear is that the odor is toxic. The strong scent of what smells like turpentine is coming from the basement’s sump pump.

It’s not just at this house. Neighbors in the Avondale community like Yuri Zilberg have the odor in their homes, as well.

“I thought I was going out of my mind,” Zilberg says.

Suh has taken action, making a flurry of phone calls to state and city departments.

And they’ve responded. The Water Department, too. And three times firefighters were here last week, Suh says.

She even had her plumber take a look. It was a $150 house call.

Even Williams could smell something in the air.

Still, no can explain it.

“I hope it’s going to be fixed. It’s not in my plan to live like this very long,” Suh says.

Chicago Fire Department spokesperson Larry Langford says firefighters tested the air with meters and found no signs of natural gas or carbon monoxide.

 

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