Utah Senator wants to ban medical waste incineration

Posted at 9:19 PM, Sep 09, 2013
and last updated 2013-09-10 09:11:40-04

NORTH SALT LAKE, Utah -- New video has surfaced of a medical waste facility in North Salt Lake. It shows thick black plumes of smoke from Stericycle's smoke stacks according to residents, who are demanding the company get rid of its incinerator.

Now they may have a politician backing them up. Utah Lawmaker Todd Weiler says he plans to introduce legislation next year which would make it illegal to operate an incinerator.

Aaron Wiley is just one of many Foxboro residents concerned about what's being burned at Stericyle.

"I was just coming home as I normally do and there was a windstorm, I started noticing ash down the road and you really couldn't see too much until I pulled into my driveway," said Wiley who shot the video.

"I've opened a bill file that would basically ban the incineration of medical waste in the state of Utah," said Republican Senator Todd Weiler during a sit down interview on Fox 13's Live at Four. [Watch the entire interview with Sen. Weiler.]

Weiler says he has been in contact with Stericycle, even asking the company what Friday's burn off was about.

"I communicate with them regularly they texted me within 15 minutes of this incident with what is going on. They said they had a problem it got too hot and that they were shutting it down and had to repair it all weekend," Weiler said. "They've been very good at communicating with me."

Foxboro residents however don't feel the same. Wiley says they didn't even know Stericycle was their neighbor when his family moved in five years ago. He's hoping Senator Weiler's bill gets the traction it needs in the Utah legislature come next year.

"That's a lot different then the conversation that we had at the city hall, so that's great if he feels he's getting the backing and, he feels, the support to get that incinerator shut down," Wiley said. "I'm glad to have him help us, support us,"

Meantime, Fox 13's calls to Stericycle have not been returned.