The fire chief said the man should not have been burning the trash, which included paint cans and air conditioners.
By NANCY TULLIS
VINDICATOR SALEM BUREAU
LEETONIA -- In the three years since James Bruderly bought 15 acres on Lodge Road across from her Fairfield Township farm, Linda Pahanish said she hasn't been bothered by the sound of chain saws or the smell of burning wood.
"I've minded my own business up until now, but Wednesday was ridiculous," she said.
Pahanish said Bruderly set fire to rubbish in a pit on his property about 8 p.m. Tuesday. She said the pit contained garbage bags, paint cans and three air conditioners.
By Wednesday morning her two-car garage and the pasture where her livestock graze were filled with smoke, Pahanish said.
Bruderly could not be reached Thursday.
Pahanish said she called the Columbiana County Sheriff's Department and the fire department.
Assistance: Leetonia Fire Chief Ken Garlough said firefighters were called to Bruderly's property about 5 a.m. Wednesday and extinguished the fire. They were there about an hour.
"He shouldn't have been burning those things, definitely not," Garlough said.
Pahanish contacted the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency and the Columbiana County Health Department, fearing the smoke contained toxins.
"We're not equipped to test for toxic chemicals," Garlough said. "Most of the stuff was burned by the time we got there, but I did see some metal, probably an air conditioner. I don't know if they were full [of Freon] or empty."
Garlough said his brother Bill investigates complaints about open burning for Fairfield Township.
He said Bruderly could be charged with violations of the township's open-burning laws.
He said Bill Garlough will determine if the OEPA should investigate.
Pahanish said she and her husband, Michael, own the farm that has been in the family for three generations.
Worried: They raise Hereford beef cattle for their own use. She said she is concerned about the possible toxins in the smoke, and also that there is a stream nearby.
"With all the concern about foot-and-mouth and mad-cow disease, we like raising our own beef, knowing what the cows eat and where they've been," she said.
"I'm worried about what's in that smoke, what we were breathing, and if it can get into the beef."