WHEATFIELD, N.Y. -- It's been more than two months since attorneys started filing Notices of Claim to the town of Wheatfield on behalf of residents living near the old Nash Road Landfill.
Sunday, they filed suit against the town and seven companies responsible for dumping Love Canal waste into the 19-acre site.
Those companies are Occidental Chemical Corporation, Bell Helicopter Textron, Inc., Saint-Gobain Abrasives, Inc., Roe Consolidated Holdings, Graphite Specialties, Crown Beverage Packaging and Greif Inc.
According to the Department of Environmental Conservation, 1,600 cubic yards of waste generated during the construction of the LaSalle Expressway in Niagara Falls was placed at the site in 1968.
Following some remediation work in 2015, the DEC changed the classification of the site to a Class 2 or "significant threat to public health or environment."
One of the attorneys for the residents, Louise Caro, says they hired a consultant to do testing at the site last fall.
"There's a lot of types of banned pesticides we're finding. The VOCs, the volatile organic compounds, those are traveling, and heavy metals and things like that. So, it's a soup of toxic waste from Love Canal," Caro said.
Signs now litter Forbes Street, which borders the landfill, some identifying the area as toxic, some trying to sell their homes.
"There were people who were really feeling that they couldn't live there anymore. They just are getting so sick, and when they leave their home, they're realizing that some of the symptoms are alleviating. They have found, once they've done testing, that it's not habitable. Some of the houses are not habitable. A lot of people would like to leave, but not everyone could do that, so those who are finding a way out, have been doing that," Caro said.
Caro says the town of Wheatfield has not reached out to her since they presented the Notices of Claim.
"They haven't filed any response. They haven't said that they wanted to proceed in any way, that they wanted to discuss anything in any way, so once the 30 days matures, we're free to file a lawsuit, and that's what we're doing," Caro said.
Town attorney Matthew Brooks says he is aware the suit has now been filed, but the town has not yet been served, and therefore can't comment on the case.
Meanwhile, the DEC will spend State Superfund money to conduct its own investigation at the site.
The DEC says it will analyze soil, surface water and groundwater, and then take legal action to recover costs from the parties responsible for the site.