With fall now officially here, the City of Clinton’s Fall Clean Up Week will soon follow — and the Public Works and Utilities Department has offered a friendly reminder for residents to start collecting their unwanted items.
During the cleanup weeks, regular rules are suspended and additional items, including furniture, appliances, four tires per household and tree limbs cut to a certain length, are collected. This year, Fall Clean Up Week will be held Oct. 12-16. Trash needs to be curbside at 7 a.m. on regular trash day.
Last year, city crews picked up 11 tons of trash that would normally not be collected, including 31 couches, 51 chairs, 67 wooden pieces of furniture, 70 mattress and box spring sets and 157 tires among other materials.
While the biannual clean up weeks — one is also held in the spring — expand what can be collected by Public Works crews and allow residents to clean up their neighborhoods, oil-based paints, batteries, insecticides, auto parts, gasoline and other substances still cannot be collected because they pose safety hazards for city crews and cannot be processed at the landfill.
In each of the last two years, a Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day, a partnership between Clinton Public Works, Sampson County and the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, has been held to discard such items. After little participation in 2014, however, the city will not be holding the event this year but have hopes to return to it in 2016, said Stacey Ray, senior administrative specialist for the department.
The cleanup effort isn’t just tied to broken-down furniture and worn-out tires, as Oct. 15 will kick off the leaf collection season.
Due to landfill regulations, bagged leaves are not acceptable for collection. Untied bagged leaves will be accepted by city collection vehicles, however emptied bags may be left at curbside for later re-use by the homeowner to further recycling efforts.
According to city officials, all efforts will be made to collect loose leaves on the normal day of collection for garbage and trash. If crews do not complete a daily route on the normal collection day, they will resume collections on the same route the following day. Citizens are asked to place those loose leaves, free of sticks and other debris, away from obstructions and within 8 feet of the edge of pavement.
The leaves are stockpiled through a no-cost partnership with Terra Blue Inc. so they can decompose and condense over the summer, meaning more can be placed in a truckload.Hundreds of tons of leaves have been collected in recent years, as along with thousands more tons of sticks and limbs on an annual basis, meaning millions more tons of yard debris disposed of responsibly.
For the leaf collection, neat piles expedite the process.
“We want clean piles,” Public Works director Jeff Vreugdenhil has said. “No bricks, no sticks — we vacuum them, so that could really damage the equipment. It really does hamper operations if someone has a dump truck load of leaves and puts them on top of limbs or rocks.”
For more information on any of City of Clinton Public Works’ collection efforts, contact the department at 910-299-4905.
Reach staff writer Chris Berendt at 910-249-4616. Follow the paper on twitter @SampsonInd and like us on Facebook.