A MASSIVE clean-up operation is well and truly underway south of the border after the region was devastated by widespread major flooding in the wake of Ex-Tropical Cyclone Debbie.
Heavy equipment is being used to clear rubbish from kerbsides in South Murwillumbah, Condong, Tumbulgum, Chinderah, Fingal and South Tweed Heads as residents continue to assess the flood damage.
Council’s Coordinator Waste Services Rod Dawson, who is overseeing the clean-up, said people needed to steer clear and allow workers to get on with the job.
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“We are working as quickly as we can but people need to appreciate this is a huge job,” he said. “The last thing we want is for anyone to create a safety issue at this time for themselves or our staff.”
Mr Dawson said skip bins were placed in many of the hard-hit areas. These are being filled and taken away every couple of hours.
He issued a reminder that these skips were to be used for general flood debris only and should not be used to dispose of paints, oils, batteries and asbestos.
“Residents are also able to transport materials to the Stotts Creek Resource Recovery Centre free of charge until Sunday 16 April,” he said.
“If people have a smaller amount of waste to dispose of keep in mind we have a kerbside collection starting in about three weeks.
“If it is convenient to wait until the kerbside clean-up or to take the material to the landfill yourself, it would take a lot of pressure off the crews working so hard at the moment to clear debris.”
As part of the mammoth clean-up, six rear loading waste disposal trucks have been fast tracked to arrive from Melbourne and Dubbo this week to assist with the kerbside collection.
In the meantime, regular household waste collection services are continuing as per usual wherever roads are accessible.
“People whose bins were not collected last week due to the floods will be collected at their next regular service day,” said Mr Dawson.
“Please put as much as possible in the red bin this week and we will also collect any bags of rubbish which are put out at the same time.
“Where bins were lost or damaged in the floods we need to know about it as soon as possible so we can arrange for a replacement, which of course carries no charge.
“People who lost bins can also put their rubbish out in bags, preferably a strong bin liner, while recyclables should be put out in a cardboard box.
“We have a number of bins in reserve and we will meet the demand as quickly as possible.”
People who are on roads which have been determined to be inaccessible are encouraged to call Council on (02) 6670 2400 for waste disposal advice.