RICHMOND, Ind. -Day two in Richmond with a plume of smoke gushing into the sky.
“It’s been horrible… It’s been horrible,” said one Richmond resident.
The fire started just after 2:30 Tuesday afternoon at the recycling site on the northwest side.
“I am a little concerned with, you know, what kind of chemicals are in the air. I know there’s a lot of plastic in the facility and what are we breathing in right now,” said Richmond resident, AJ Cox.
“We gathered up our dogs and packed our bags just as quick as we could and we got in the car as quick as we could and drove to our families house and stayed the night there.”
Tonja Thompson was watching tv when she heard the news.
“Everybody close your windows and get your dogs inside and that is exactly what we did,” said Thompson.
The city has a half mile evacuation zone in all directions, which includes homes and businesses. People living across the city are eager to know what toxins they could be breathing in.
“We are just like what is going to be the long term effects,” said resident, Adam Martinez.
“I’m not overly concerned but I’m not going to go outside for a run anytime soon. i have two kids, toddlers at home, so I’m more worried about them,” said Corey Baker.
It’s not just the air people are concerned about…
“Flint, Michigan just comes to mind when you think of how water can be contaminated and how that happens,” said Baker.
Officials say the owner of the building had received a previous unsafe citation for stacking plastic. Residents feel something more should have been done.
“I am upset with whoever should have been enforcing that and not making sure something should have been done,” said Thompson.
For now, people in the area are waiting it out until they learn more.
“We don’t really know the future of how long we’re gonna be staying here or to go stay somewhere else, that’s kind of dependent on what they say about the air quality and the water quality,” said Cox
A lot of people say they have been impressed with the response from the community stepping in to help. One man says that the firefighters have received enough water to last them a month thanks to donations.