Washington, DC

Photo by PoPville flickr user T. Mertens

What was sprayed on streets last night?:

“It smells like miso or chicken broth. And made a mess of cars.Any insight?”

Another reader writes via email:

“I took my dog for his morning walk and noticed a strong sewage odor on the street, Rock Creek Church Road NW (between Shepherd Street and 5th Street). Two other people on the street commented on the strong sewage odor. Then I noticed that all the cars parked on the street, including mine, were spattered with a gross brown liquid. The brown liquid looked thick like tree sap that will not easily wash off.

Could this be DC’s new road “treatment” for the sleet forecast for this afternoon? Do you know if it is safe? Upon closer inspection, the main road was definitely dark and wet looking and the side streets remained dry. Do you have any idea what this brown sewage smelling stuff is? Unfortunately, it tracks into folks homes on the bottom of shoes and pets feet.”

Ed. Note: on the 4D listserve a resident noted a “beet juice mixture is sometimes used as a de-icing agent for the roads”

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