Residents plagued by horrendous mystery rashes that stop people going outside

Residents of a street have been left unable to go outside for fear of getting rashes on their skin.

Residents of Oak Street, Shaw, Greater Manchester, have been finding “horrendous” dust covering surfaces and hanging in clouds in the air.

Locals reckon the problems started after the demolition of the Shaw Distribution Centre,Manchester Evening Newsreports.

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Three mills are being destroyed as part of the operation in order to make space for 400 new homes.

They say the demolition operation has been causing huge clouds of dust and noise – although contractor Metropolitan Demolition says they have followed all legislation.

Speaking to the outlet, Susan, 69, a resident of the street, said: “I’ve not been able to go into my garden for years. We’ve been shielding and we’ve been really affected by it. The garden was the only place we felt safe.

“There’s an awful lot of dust. I phone [environmental health] up twice a week.

“The car is filthy. It’s just been horrendous but we know they have a job to do. We have to have the car cleaned once a week. [The dust] just sweeps in. We’re stuck in the house, we can’t come out.”

“I know they have to do these jobs, but the noise,” 76-year-old resident Margert Hoyle added. “The whole house shook, the bedroom, the mirror. It’s been noisy and bad.

“It’s been really bad since January. You worry about the foundations of the house. I’ll sit in my chair and the house is literally shaking."

Mum of two Vicky Barker, 34, lives on Oak Street and says her lad has got a rash, blaming the demolition.

“At first we thought it was from his swimming lessons and the chlorine was reacting to him," she said.

“We had been to the GP several times who said it was a heat rash or an allergic reaction.

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“We were given a variety of creams and gels but nothing [helped]. The rash would come and go and up to about five weeks ago it was getting more severe.

“He was scratching really hard to the point he was drawing blood. I was doing my absolute best to help him by cleaning his bedding every three to four days, the towels every two days and have them dry on the washing line outside, but now I realise the dust was probably landing on the bedding and towels.”

Another resident added: “Recently people in the area have reported being itchy all over which is true for my house, too. We are all itching all over. Until we saw a post on Facebook, we thought it was an embarrassing situation for us only."

Operations director for Metropolitan Demolition Gerard Jackson said: “Firstly, I would like to say that I am sorry to hear that a number of residents appear to have medical issues in the vicinity local to our project. However, I would like to state the following:

“A full refurbishment and demolition asbestos survey was carried out prior to commencement of the work which identified minimal traces of asbestos. The asbestos that was identified was removed using a licensed and approved contractor.

“An independent analyst confirmed that all asbestos had been removed from the project, and clean air certification was issued. Therefore, I can assure all residents that there has been no asbestos present during the demolition of the mill.

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“We were made aware of one direct complaint in relation to dust and have had regular contact with Environmental Health and the HSE over the demolition.

“We can confirm that we have had water suppression in operation throughout the whole demolition operation and this is still being utilised today with an expected completion date within the next four weeks.

“We have maintained water suppression throughout the site and have had water directly fed into our crushing plant.

“We have had regular visits from both Environmental Health and HSE and have also had monthly independent audits carried out on site. We believe we have done everything reasonably practical to reduce the impact of the demolition on the local population.

“We will continue to use water suppression over the next four weeks until our completion.

“We appreciate that demolition can be of concern to the local residents however we have maintained mitigating control measures to comply with all current legislation.”

The Daily Star has contacted Metropolitan Demolition for further comment.


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