• Rock Hill homeowners claim blasting is damaging their homes

    By: Jason Stoogenke

    Updated:

    ROCK HILL, S.C. - Rock Hill homeowners are upset with Vulcan, a company that blasts rock in the Carolinas. The rock goes into concrete and asphalt. 

    [ALSO READ: Rocks blasted from construction site tear into couple's home]

    Residents believe the explosions are getting worse and damaging their homes.

    Robert Mishak lives near Vulcan's Gold Hill site, and he thinks blasting damaged his home, as well. 

    "We (are) having to buy water. I don't like taking a bath in it. It smells funny sometimes," he told Action 9's Jason Stoogenke. "I don't mind them doing progress and development, but I'd like for them to think about me, too, over here. That's all."

    Chris Thomas and Scott Nixon live near Vulcan's Rockingham quarry and blame the company’s blasting for the cracks in their houses and patios.

    "The house shakes. It draws your attention," Nixon said. "If you're outside, it feels like the ground (will) fall out from under you." 

    He also said; "Some days they blast and you just kind of feel a little bit and the other days, they blast and you can just feel it." 

    "If you're out here (on) a normal day, you can actually feel the ground rumbling," Thomas said. "I'm not moving. This (is) my daddy's old home place, and it's family land so (I) don't want to get rid of it."

    Vulcan is the biggest company of its kind in the U.S. and has been around for decades. It has about 40 sites across North and South Carolina. Stoogenke never heard of any complaints until recently. 

    Stoogenke asked Vulcan whether something changed recently. Vulcan Vice President Jimmy Fleming agreed to an on-camera interview about the complaints. 

    "I think it's safe to say we've been blasting all along during this period but not perhaps as frequently when the market turned down in 2008, and we saw the recession," Fleming said. 

    He said Vulcan measures every blast to make sure it's within the legal limit. 

    "We monitor every single one of our shots with seismographs, vibration monitors, to make sure that we're staying within the state regulations," he said. 

    Stoogenke checked with the state and Vulcan has stayed within the rules.

    If you have a problem with blasting, call Vulcan. 

    Fleming said the company will adjust its blasting technique, if necessary. 

    The company can also put you on a blasting list and call you before each blast. 

    If that doesn't work, file a complaint with the state.

    North Carolina:  https://deq.nc.gov/about/divisions/energy-mineral-land-resources/contact-demlr.

    South Carolina:  https://scdhec.gov/environment/land-management/mining-and-reclamation

    It's a heavily regulated industry. 

    At least one of the three homeowners Stoogenke interviewed has filed a complaint. State mining officials told Action 9 they're looking into it.

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