Should VIM Recycling Plant Stay?

By: Erin Logan Email
By: Erin Logan Email

Last month one man died and fire and smoke from the VIM Recycling Plant filled Elkhart County.

Now, neighbors are ready to sound off.

As we’ve told you, the scene of the deadly fire is open, but work is being done only outside.

Six to seven-hundred people have signed a petition and many plan on attending a meeting Saturday trying to get the VIM Recycling Plant to re-build somewhere else.

The accidental fire at the the Elkhart County plant on Old U-S 33 was started by an explosion inside a machine.

A neighborhood the Peffley family could once literally call their own has changed dramatically since they moved in 30 years ago. It was just them and a few other guests

Mike Peffley says, “Once every three years now I see a deer. I used to see them every three days.”

Peffley says now, it seems like all he's seeing is fires--three within four years at VIM in his neighborhood. Most recently, the deadly one that has many thinking about the possibility of more danger.

Peffley says, “One of these days something bad is going to happen to somebody's house. But, now one thing is for sure, when the wind isn't blowing this place reeks. We used to be able to sit outside and enjoy ourselves now we can't do it nowadays. You just get tired of it after awhile. It's time to move on.”

While the Peffley family is clearly bothered, they're confident their voices will be heard But, the Trosper family wants to be seen and heard. They have a huge sign in front of their house telling people to attend Saturday’s meeting. They live hundreds of yards away from the recycling plant and their son lives just steps away.

Gloria Trosper says, “It was so scary. It's hard to describe hearing your kids and not know what's going on and your grandkids screaming.”

That's why Trosper has spent the last month compiling a list of six-seven hundred signatures hoping to get V-I-M to move out of their neighborhood.

Trosper says, “If we have a good turnout with people supporting us maybe we can get something done.”

A few neighbors we talked to are hoping VIM stays put out of fear of what could move there in its place Those people would not show their face on camera out of fear of what the rest of the neighbors would say.

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