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Gas-Like Smell Overwhelms Long Beach, South Shore

National Grid says odor was not natural gas.


A strong odor that carried through Long Beach, Island Park, Oceanside and other South Shore towns Wednesday, prompting numerous calls to city and Nassau County fire and police officials and causing local schools to keep their students inside, is being investigated by National Grid and Nassau County Office of Emergency Management.

Long Beach Fire Chief Richard Corbett said that a barge off the coast of Long Beach was possibly to blame for the pungent stench of natural gas that people began to smell around 10 a.m. Wednesday, according to the Long Beach Herald.

About the gas-like smell, Corbett said:

“Due to the weather conditions, it usually vents up into the atmosphere, but due to the fog and the rain it held [the gas] down and the wind blew it onto our shores.”

But Wendy Ladd, a spokeswoman for National Grid, said that a barge would not cause such an odor and that the county agency continues to investigate the source of the smell that seemed to emanating from Long Beach.

"National Grid confirmed that the odor was not natural gas," Ladd wrote in an email to Patch on Thursday. "The source of the odor is undetermined."

Responding to a query about the odor, posted on Long Beach Patch’s Facebook page, Carol Mejia wrote that she noticed the smell while driving into Island Park: “This morning as I drove over the [Long Beach] Bridge at about 10 am., I smelled something sulfur-like. I figured it was from a vehicle.”

Jaine Seigel Italiano wrote that she and her friends were on Park Avenue when they smelled something rotten: “My friends and I were at a store across from the Long Beach train station at about eleven and we smelled something like a strong sulfur smell, it was horrible, like rotten eggs!”

Another resident indicated that the smell might be part of ongoing stench in Long Beach. “There is a strong gas smell that lasts for hours on and off near Laurelton Boulevard and Park Avenue,” Jeannie Santiago wrote. “It’s been there for a while!”

At Oceanside School District, where students and personnel were "locked in" for more than an hour, two pregnant elementary school teachers went home due to the strong smell, Newsday reports.

* This story was updated at 2:17 p.m. on 5.10.12.

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The real bear May 11, 2012 at 01:14 AM
Probably from city hall
Lloyd May 11, 2012 at 08:29 AM
I attribute it to the rising costs of water for Aqua Water customers. They're cutting back on baths and showers to once a month.
Lloyd May 11, 2012 at 08:48 AM
I just read that Aqua Water has been bought out this month by Long Island American Water Co. What does that mean for Long Beach residents? We dont get a separate water bill here for our co-op and my house is serviced by South Farmingdale Water Co.
Just a Resident May 11, 2012 at 11:24 AM
Not many people realize that there is a transcontinental gas pipeline that comes right across Long Beach slightly to the west of the bridge.
Lobster May 11, 2012 at 12:17 PM
The gas pipe comes from New Jersey, enters Long Beach from ocean on Long Beach Blvd. It runs parallel to the jetty on it's west side. It is under salt water and sand that is permeated with salt, and like rust, salt water never sleeps (highly corrosive). A good starting place for checking for leaks would be the pluming associated with this pipeline coming ashore. I got the pictures.
paul.d.spellman May 11, 2012 at 01:28 PM
I heard about that gas line, it is the one transporting the gas from the Lido Gas Fields in Point Lookout to the Port of Los Angeles.
Candygram for Mongo May 11, 2012 at 03:43 PM
they should try a junk shot. If that doesn't work, then a top kill would be in order.
Brendan May 11, 2012 at 03:49 PM
You really have to love some people, pds. Just an endless source of entertainment. "Oh, look at this big word I can use...."
June June 29, 2012 at 07:50 PM
Lloyd...how do you live in long beach - look at the water towers everyday and not know that City has their own water system. Long Island American buying Aqua has no bearing on Long Beach.
LBP August 07, 2012 at 10:53 PM
It has smelled like a sewage treatment plant since late spring. What's going on down here?

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