Tuesday, January 18, 2022

First round of New Hanover County debris pickup expected to be complete by Thanksgiving

Hurricane Florence brought down an unprecedented amount of debris for the region and pickup is taking longer than some would hope for --- but residents have not been forgotten, the county assures.

Only a few areas in the county have completed the initial pickup of debris from Florence (Port City Daily/Courtesy NHC)
Only a few areas in the county have completed the initial pickup of debris from Florence. (Port City Daily/Courtesy NHC)

WILMINGTON — The City of Wilmington is almost complete with its first pass through of collecting debris from Hurricane Florence while New Hanover County is still working to service its residents with a first pass through.

“The City of Wilmington expects that the first pass of vegetative debris will be complete early next week – perhaps as early as Sunday. After the first pass is complete, crews will have picked up more than 800,000 cubic yards of vegetative debris. The city estimates about 400,000 more cubic yards of vegetative debris will be picked up during the second pass. When complete, crews will have picked up more than 10 times the amount of debris than from Hurricane Matthew,” City of Wilmington Spokeswoman Malissa Talbert said.

“Crews completed the first pass of construction & demolition debris earlier this week and collected between 13,000-14,000 cubic yards. A second pass for construction and demolition debris will take place in the coming weeks,” she concluded.

New Hanover County

The unincorporated region of New Hanover County, however, is taking more time to complete with a much larger land area to service. Debris removal in New Hanover County began on Sep. 24 and is still taking place.

Director of New Hanover County Environmental Management Joe Suleyman said the county has a significantly larger area to serve compared to smaller municipalities and while some residents might feel like they were forgotten, he assures them they have not been.
Currently, the county has 43 debris removal trucks working seven days a week from 7 a.m. – 7 p.m. and have already picked up 500,000-cubic-yards of debris. To put it in perspective, that’s six times the debris from Hurricane Matthew, which only warranted 83,000-cubic-yards of debris pickup.
Suleyman said the county is planning on having the first round of pickups complete by Thanksgiving, the second round of pickups should happen much faster and hopefully be complete by December.

Michael Praats can be reached at Michael.P@Localvoicemedia.com

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