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Carson Residents Protest Dominguez Channel Stink Ahead Of Virtual Meeting

CARSON (CBSLA) — About two dozen seniors and low-income residents rallied in Carson Thursday to raise their own stink about a sickening smell coming from the Dominguez Channel.

The city is hosting a discussion on an odor remediation plan at 5 p.m., but because it's a virtual meeting residents can't attend in person, they decided to hold an in-person rally beforehand.

The sulphur-like smell has permeated Carson, particularly in neighborhoods closest to the Dominguez Channel.  Residents like Carla Zanotti says she can't sleep because of it, and she can't get the odor out of her mobile home.

"You wake up in the middle of the night, choking or with headaches," she said.

County health officials say the smell is caused by decaying vegetation in the channel releasing hydrogen sulfide, and it has been declared a public nuisance. But residents like Ana Meni, who has lived in Carson for 42 years, are skeptical. She says her symptoms are rather mild – headaches and bouts of nausea and dizziness.

But the smell is making others really sick, to the point that she wants city leaders to cover the cost of temporary relocation for impacted residents. Currently, residents are expected to pay up front costs and submit for reimbursement to get their money back.

"You have to be able to afford it to begin with, and we don't," Carson resident Valerie Rose said.

The virtual townhall is scheduled for 5 p.m. Thursday and will stream on the county's YouTube channel. LA County's Public Works Director Mark Pestrella, Public Health Officer Dr. Muntu Davis, and South Coast Air Quality Management District's Deputy Executive Officer Terrence Mann are schedule to speak. Questions must be submitted in advance online.

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