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Hurricane Irma debris collection surpasses 3 million cubic yards

Crews continue to work seven days a week to remove debris

MIAMI (October 26, 2017)

The Miami-Dade County Department of Solid Waste Management (DSWM) has reached a significant milestone in its efforts to remove more than 3 million cubic yards (3,019,573 million cubic yards to be exact) of debris left behind by Hurricane Irma. These numbers reflect the debris currently being removed during the County’s first pass for residential hurricane debris collection.  A second debris collection effort is planned and will take place after the first pass is completed throughout the service area.

DSWM has been hard at work for the past 45 days removing debris using its bulky waste crews and contracted haulers.  To put this staggering amount into perspective, the debris left behind by Irma is roughly equivalent to 120,783 bulky waste pickups of 25 cubic yards.  DSWM has more debris to handle from this solitary event than it manages in an entire year of bulky waste pickups and materials dropped off at its 13 Neighborhood Trash and Recycling Centers.

While this accomplishment during the first pass of hurricane debris removal caps more than a month’s worth of effort, DSWM continues to aggressively address debris piles and urges Miami-Dade residents to remain patient. DSWM is responsible for removing hurricane debris for approximately 340,000 Miami-Dade households spread out across roughly 320-square miles, as well as material from the public rights-of-way and on County-maintained roads in unincorporated Miami-Dade and several municipalities. DSWM crews and contractors are working every day—including holidays and weekends—and will continue to do so until the last pile of debris is collected.

Hurricane Debris Removal Do’s and Don’ts

Residents who are in areas that are still waiting for the first pass of debris removal crews are encouraged to adhere to the following debris removal tips:

Do’s:

• Please ensure that hurricane debris piles ONLY include: vegetative waste, wood and vinyl fencing, and storm-related furniture, mattresses and construction and demolition debris.
• Situate piles at the curb away from fire hydrants, parked cars, utility poles, mailboxes, healthy trees and other personal property that might be damaged by equipment.
• Take non-storm damaged trash to one of the Department’s 13 Neighborhood Trash and Recycling Centers or hold onto them until bulky waste pickup service resumes.

Don’ts:

• Hurricane debris piles should not include: bagged kitchen waste, hazardous waste, tires, appliances or electronics.  Piles with these items will not be collected.  DSWM Enforcement Officers will be canvassing neighborhoods and leaving courtesy notices at properties with non-hurricane related items or material in the piles. 

Residents should not allow their landscape maintenance company to place lawn clippings and other non-storm related landscape material on debris piles.  Hired landscapers should take yard waste from general landscape maintenance to an approved disposal site.

Bulky Waste Scheduling Remains Suspended

DSWM customers are reminded that due to hurricane removal efforts, bulky waste scheduling remains suspended until further notice. Customers can dispose of non-storm related bulky waste items by taking them to one of the Department’s 13 Neighborhood Trash and Recycling Centers.

Miami-Dade residents interested in updates on DSWM’s debris removal progress have a number of options at their disposal. Residents can see if their home is an area that has been assigned to a contractor, is pending assignment or has been completed for the first pass of hurricane debris removal on the Hurricane Irma Debris Viewer. Countywide updates and tips for managing debris can be found on the Recovering Hurricane Irma Together web page. DSWM often posts updates on its Facebook and Twitter accounts. For general information on DSWM, residents can either call 311 or visit DSWM’s website.