Lee County Solid Waste has resumed regular curbside collection of trash, recyclables and yard waste on their normal weekly schedule. Storm debris-related collection is ongoing countywide and is separate from regularly scheduled curbside pickups. Storm debris includes trees, branches, shrubs and other vegetation that was downed during Hurricane Irma. It also includes downed fencing, flooring, furniture, wallboard and other debris that had to be removed from homes due to structural damage or flooding. Specially hired debris-removal contractors – not households’ regular haulers – are in Lee County to handle storm debris.
As of Wednesday, September 27th, Lee County had collected 63,000 cubic yards of debris in the first 10 days since post-Hurricane Irma cleanup began. The county is working to create a schedule to show residents when each area of the county can expect to have its first pass-through of debris collection.
There are 2,436 miles of county roads that have storm-related horticultural debris to be removed. Lee County anticipates its first pass of horticulture debris collection from the storm will be completed within a month.
Lee County’s debris-management hauler, Crowder Gulf, is picking up debris, currently in the San Carlos Park and East Lee County areas of Alva, Buckingham and Lehigh Acres. Lee County is working to open more debris staging sites as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, many of the pre-certified sites the county had before the storm are under water or very wet due to the significant rainfall in August and September.
Crowder Gulf has 20 double-barrel debris collection trucks and 34 bucket trucks on the roads now. It is anticipating 10 more double-barrel trucks by the weekend, with more on the way as the county ramps up collection efforts.
Fort Myers Beach Debris Collection Begins
On September 27th the Town of Fort Myers Beach announced that it had received final clearance to begin horticultural hurricane debris collection using equipment with a “claw ” to pick up horticultural debris. “Contractors will start at the North end of Estero Island and will proceed southward; in an effort to keep the drainage road/wastewater and waterline project progressing expeditiously there may be some diversion from the schedule to facilitate these contractors work.”
Only horticultural debris that can be visually verified will be collected. Residents were warned that the process will be a lengthy one and to check with Town Hall for updates (239-765-0202).
Debris from Hurricane Irma should be separated between horticultural (yard waste) and construction & demolition (C&D or structural waste). It does not have to be bundled or cut to length. Do not place piles on sidewalks (particularly in areas of school bus stops) or near mailboxes, fire hydrants or trees in case a clam bucket is used to pick up the pile. See www.leegov.com/solidwaste for more information and a diagram of proper set out.
Residents can help speed the cleanup by placing yard waste that is in compliance out for weekly collection by your regular hauler. This includes yard waste that is bagged, bundled and tied, or in containers. Each bag, bundle or container needs to weigh less than 50 pounds. Bundles need to be less than six feet. Palm fronds can be stacked in neat piles at the curb.
For more information about Solid Waste collections and debris collections, see the Frequently Asked Questions below.
FAQs: Hurricane Irma clean up
As residents tackle property clean up, Lee County Solid Waste offers the following guidance to frequently asked questions.
What is the difference between storm-related debris and regular household trash?
Storm debris includes any trees, tree limbs and shrubs that went down in the hurricane. It also includes any fencing, flooring, furniture or wall board, etc. that had to be removed from the home due to flooding or other structural damage. This will be picked up by special debris-collection contractors.
Regular household trash is those things that you would throw away in a normal week with no hurricane. This will be picked up by your regular waste hauler.
When will the storm debris be collected from my curb and what should I do to prepare?
There is no definite schedule yet for when storm debris will be collected from your neighborhood. Additional debris collection vehicles arrive daily and are dispatched as soon as they are certified by FEMA. This cleanup effort will take months; it will not be concluded until all county neighborhoods are cleared.
You can prepare for the storm debris collection by having everything at the curb in separate piles; vegetation waste should be separate from construction debris, including furniture, appliances. If you have large amounts of leaves and small twigs in plastic bags, set those aside from any brush piles. The brush will be ground into mulch and plastic cannot be in the mulch.
Where can I get more information?
For more information on proper set out, go to www.leegov.com/solidwaste/residential
The Lee County Solid Waste Division is a nationally-recognized enterprise system providing residents and businesses safe, affordable waste disposal and recycling services. The system uses an energy-from- waste combustion process to create clean, renewable energy and single-stream recycling for material recovery. For more information visit www.leegov.com/solidwaste
Information provided by Lee County Solid Waste