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Neighbors fed up with smoke from MW Horticulture fires

Another fire was burning Monday at MW Horticulture in North Fort Myers, the most recent of several fires at the business in the last year.

The smoke got so bad at one point Monday that the Florida Highway Patrol was forced to shut down I-75, and neighbors are fed up.

“The smell of that all the time … that’s what we’ve been dealing with for years now; on and off for years we have been dealing with this,” said Joyce Damron, who lives nearby.

Bayshore Fire Chief Larry Nisbet is in charge of the department that repeatedly responds to fires at MW Horticulture.

“We continue to have fires and we should not have fires,” Nisbet said.

Lee County filed a lawsuit against MW Horticulture, hoping to force change, but so far, that hasn’t happened.

“We’ve been fining the landowner a couple hundred dollars a day to try and stop this kind of behavior and we have gotten nowhere unfortunately through the court system,” said Commission Chairman Brian Hamman.

Regression. That’s what Damron sees when she looks out her back window.

“When is it going to happen again? Because now it’s a waiting game. You’re sitting there and you just got relaxed and then it happens all over again.”

Nisbet said this latest fire is contained and they’re working to reduce the smoke still billowing into the air. He said he has no reason to believe the cause is suspicious, but MW Horticulture told WINK News on Monday that an arsonist is to blame for this and the previous fires. They’re calling for an investigation.

Reporter:Nicole Gabe
Writer:Jackie Winchester
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