NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — A News 8 crew first smelled it during a 6:30 a.m. live shot on Grand Avenue in New Haven. There’s no nice way to put it, it smelled like poo. Excrement. Fecal matter. It was strong, too. For about 3 hours, it stunk up Grand Avenue from approximately Ferry Street down to the train tracks.
Depending on where you stood, the smell went from bad to awful. Students and parents outside Farnam Courts covered their noses and mouths while they waited for school buses. The nuances varied, but the smell was clearly animal waste of some kind.
“It smells like horse poo and really bad, too,” said Shanice Gardner at the bus stop. “Like unbearable.”
“Probably the sewer backed up,” suggested Gloria Williams as she waited nearby.
It turns out the smell came from a small accident involving a truck from McVac Environmental Services. One thing they do is transport solid waste from sewage treatment plants. That solid waste is euphemistically known as “cake.” A small piece of that cake – fell out of a truck around 6 a.m. at the corner of East Street and Grand Avenue. McVac is also an environmental cleanup company, so they quickly did all the right things to clean it up.
There was just one problem. Cars kept driving through the mess, spreading the smell up and down Grand Avenue. McVac spread around a deodorizer that made certain blocks smell like chocolate, but they ran out of that. Around 9 a.m., they got some lemon-scented deodorizer and sprayed that up and down Grand Avenue, and the smell was gone.
Since the city of New Haven sent street sweepers to help with the cleanup, the spokesman for the city says they will be looking for reimbursement for the cost from McVac.