Mysterious foul odor plagues Utah city: 'If you smell something, say something'

A mysterious foul odor has one Utah city telling residents if you “smell something, say something.”

Residents have complained of a smell spreading across West Valley City, and city officials are trying to pinpoint where the odor is coming from.

“It’s kind of a sewer type smell,” West Valley City communications director Sam Johnson told FOX13 on Wednesday. “It’s just a musty, sewer smell that is very noticeable and very unpleasant that you can smell in certain parts of the city stronger, but it even comes down here to City Hall.”

West Valley City has been plagued by the smell for years, according to the station. The city launched a campaign urging residents to call city leaders so they can document complaints.

Johnson said the culprit could be a waste processor located outside West Valley City by a landfill and a warm summer breeze could filter the smell into nearby neighborhoods.

“Smells where they had to go inside, shut their windows," he described. “Things that were concerning to their kids.”

The odor has residents perplexed.

“Sometimes when you’re walking by it’s like death," Nicholas Britton, a West Valley City resident, told the station. "You’re like, what in the heck? You’re looking around thinking 'What the heck’s around?' Maybe an animal or something.”

Johnson hopes more complaints will convince Salt Lake County and Utah’s Department of Environmental Quality to do something about it.