Environmental teams move in to clean up after Harrier jet crash in Imperial Valley

IMPERIAL, Calif. - Environmental teams have now moved in to clean up after a Harrier jet crashed in Imperial Valley and burned three homes.

A neighbor sent 10News new photos from the crash site. The jet parts that exploded and scattered are gone, but the danger to residents remains.

"There's still a lot of talk about it, and of course we're in the aftermath of now, you know, what next," said neighbor and witness Carlos Roacho. He says the smell of jet fuel still lingers near the crash site.

Workers wore masks while they cleaned up and sprayed a water and wax mixture on the parts to keep hazardous particles from settling.

"It's a really intense smell," said Roacho. "I've been in burned homes but this is... It smelled very, very different."

Three homes were damaged by fire but destroyed by the fuel. Everything inside was ruined, including photos and jewelry that survived the flames.

"It just kind of penetrates everything," said Roacho. "They had bottles, like medicine bottles and so forth. Once they opened it, and it has the odor inside."

Crews have also been taking soil samples to determine just how long the neighborhood will remain a dangerous crash site. The military has installed devices that will monitor the levels of dangerous airborne particles.

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