POMPANO BEACH, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--It’s the type of service you rarely think about until it’s truly needed. Much like electricity for your home or gasoline in your vehicle, most Florida residents may take their garbage or recycling collection for granted under ordinary daily circumstances.
“Following a powerful hurricane, one of the most essential needs for a community to begin recovery is the reliable return of its most vital services,” said Dawn McCormick, Community Affairs Director for Waste Management of Florida. “That’s why we spend a lot of time in the weeks and months prior to the start of hurricane season focusing within our company on annual hurricane preparation and recovery planning.”
The company also issues public advisories to residents and businesses about storm preparation. This information includes:
BEFORE THE STORM:
- Secure garbage and recycling containers. Place empty containers in a secure location away from open spaces.
- Stop all yard maintenance and tree trimming activities when there is a named storm with a predicted Florida landfall.
- Bundle and tie down all loose trash such as tree limbs, wood planks or building and roof tiles. Place these materials in a location where debris cannot become hazardous to homes and automobiles in high winds.
- Waste Management will continue to collect household garbage and recycling materials in the neighborhoods it serves according to designated schedules until a hurricane warning is issued.
AFTER THE STORM:
- After the storm passes, separate normal household garbage such as food refuse, diapers and regular household waste from storm debris caused by high winds, hail and rain. Storm debris including tree limbs, carpet and padding, aluminum and wood fencing, and household appliances should be placed curbside in a separate pile or piles.
- Separating normal household waste from storm debris will allow Waste Management employees to collect your household garbage more quickly and safely, and help prevent odors and safety hazards that would be created by mixing your household garbage with storm debris. The separation is also necessary to allow Waste Management to collect normal household waste and to permit other firms to collect storm debris in accordance with arrangements made by local municipalities and/or the County with contractors independent from Waste Management.
- Waste Management will restart curbside garbage and recycling collection of normal household waste immediately on the streets that are passable. The company will expand its routes to additional areas as more streets become clear of debris and other impediments.
“After a significant storm blows through a community, there are few more welcome signs of things getting back to normal than seeing our people doing their jobs,” said McCormick. “Once public safety is restored, the rapid recovery of a town or city begins with the startup of routine services. While contractors from other companies are contracted to pick up storm debris, we focus on restoring regular household collection from the curbside.”
Also available in Waste Management’s mix of hurricane preparedness and recovery services is the Bagster® bag. An innovation in waste removal, Bagster is ideal in situations where there is a need to discard more debris than can fit in a typical bin or garbage receptacle, but not enough to require a dumpster. Available at local home improvement stores, Bagster bags are strong enough to hold 3,300 pounds of severe storm and hurricane debris items, such as tree stumps, large tree limbs, roofing shingles, full sheets of plywood and sheetrock.
“Our value to a community is not always apparent unless collection stops,” added McCormick. “Doing everything we can to prepare before, and return to service after a crisis, is what being a good community partner is all about.”
ABOUT WASTE MANAGEMENT
Waste Management, based in Houston, Texas, is the leading provider of comprehensive waste management services in North America. Through its subsidiaries, the company provides collection, transfer, recycling and resource recovery, and disposal services. It is also a leading developer, operator and owner of landfill gas-to-energy facilities in the United States. The company’s customers include residential, commercial, industrial, and municipal customers throughout North America. To learn more information about Waste Management visit www.wm.com or www.thinkgreen.com.