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Safely Disposing of Fire Debris

We are at a loss for words at the devastation and great damage suffered by many families and business owners in our community. We are inspired by the relentless spirit and drive of this community to move forward through such difficult times to rebuild and restore. Cleaning up after a wildfire is an emotional evolution, but also involves immediate and long-term physical health risks.

At Dry Creek Landfill and Rogue Transfer & Recycling in White City the safety of our customers, employees and community is of utmost importance. Wildfire debris can contain many types of hazardous materials, including the following:

  • Tiny particles of dust, dirt, and soot that can easily become airborne and inhaled
  • Toxic amounts of heavy metals including arsenic, cadmium, copper, lead and mercury
  • Asbestos
  • Material such as propane tanks, air conditioners, batteries, cleaning products, pesticides, and herbicides that are hazardous or require special handling and disposal

Special requirements for transporting and disposing of wildfire debris.

Before entering any area impacted by wildfire, clearance from the appropriate governmental authorities supervising the fire remediation and clean-up process should be obtained, and any applicable procedures and guidelines followed.

Any clean-up of fire impacted properties should be conducted by professionals who have the appropriate expertise for these activities. Anyone who is in an area impacted by fire should take a number of precautions. First and foremost, the area should be cleared of all fire and potential for fire recurrence and should be safe from unstable structures, hazardous materials, falling vegetation, open pipes, burning gas, propane tanks and other hazards. Appropriate personal protective equipment including N-95 masks, gloves, long shirts and pants, safety glasses and stout shoes should be worn. Appropriate procedures should be followed when leaving such an area, including potentially changing shoes and removing outer layers of clothing. Ash should not be disturbed to the greatest extent possible.

Remediation of property destroyed or damaged by wildfire can be dangerous and should be approached with caution. The area should be deemed safe by state and local authorities prior to remediation and clean-up activities.

No wildfire debris should be transported for disposal unless it has been fully extinguished with no hot spots or risk of re-ignition.

The following activities should be considered as part of the remediation and clean-up process:

  • Establish stormwater best management practices and implement prior to clean up activities.
  • Identify site specific hazards (unstable structures and or vegetation) and remove hazards before proceeding.
  • Conduct a Hazardous Waste Assessment by Certified Professionals
  1. Certified professionals should identify obvious hazardous materials, including gross asbestos containing materials, radioactive materials, mercury, bullets and mortar rounds, and other explosive materials. Such materials will need to be removed and handled by the appropriate professionals and disposed of in accordance with applicable laws.
  2. Certified Asbestos Consultants/Experts should assess areas for asbestos containing materials (including ash). Any waste containing asbestos will be disposed of in accordance with applicable laws and guidelines. Click here for more information.

The following procedures should be followed for specific debris types:

Building/Structure Debris (Non-Ash)
  • Any debris (non-ash) from a building or structure being delivered to Dry Creek Landfill or the Rogue Transfer Station must be accompanied by an appropriate survey that certifies it does not contain asbestos.
  • Any debris (non-ash) from a building or structure that contains asbestos must be transported and disposed in accordance with applicable laws and guidelines. For more information click here.
  • Debris from Commercial Properties also requires a special waste profile form signed by the generator of the material to be disposed of. Profile forms can be found here.
Ash
  • Ash delivered to the Dry Creek Landfill by commercial haulers must be wetted down prior to transportation and/or wrapped in at least 6 ml plastic. Ash wetted down in roll off containers must also have a liner of at least 6 ml plastic. Ash delivered to the Rogue Transfer Station must be wrapped in at least 6 ml plastic.
  • All loads must be covered prior to transportation to minimize dispersion of ash and debris during transportation.
  • Ash for disposal must be accompanied by the appropriate certification from a registered professional that the material is free and clear of all known hazardous contaminants including asbestos. At a minimum this includes TCLP metals, TPH and asbestos (see the Dry Creek Landfill Fire Demolition Debris, Contaminated Soil & Wildfire Ash Testing Protocols for more information).
  • Ash from Commercial Properties also requires a special waste profile form signed by the generator of the material to be disposed of. Profile forms can be found here.
Contaminated Soil
  • Soil impacted by wildfires should be tested and evaluated for hazardous materials that may have leached into the soil (i.e. heavy metals or petroleum products). At a minimum this includes TCLP metals, TPH and asbestos (see the Dry Creek Landfill Fire Demolition Debris, Contaminated Soil & Wildfire Ash Testing Protocols for more information). Testing documentation is required prior to disposal of soil at Dry Creek landfill.
  • Impacted soils should be removed from the site and disposed of in accordance to local, state and federal regulations.
  • For more information regarding disposal at Dry Creek Landfill, click here.
  • For guidance documents and policy information from Oregon DEQ click here.
  • Soil from Commercial Properties also requires a special waste profile form signed by the generator of the material to be disposed of. Profile forms can be found here.
General Household Items (not structural debris)
  • General household items (not structural debris) that is damaged by wildfire (e.g., furniture, clothing, etc.) may generally be disposed of in accordance with general household waste guidelines.
Vehicles and Metal
  • Identify any vehicles (i.e. cars, boats, motorcycles, ATV’s, trailers, etc.) and other large metal debris that need to be removed for recycling and disposal.
  • Confirm that motor vehicles have been cleared of their titles.
  • Verify that any liquid in the vehicle is removed prior to transport for recycling or disposal.
  • Dry Creek Landfill cannot accept discarded or abandoned vehicles but could accept damaged vehicles (with appropriate documentation) that a recycling facility does not accept.
Appliances (such as refrigerators and freezers)
  • Since appliances require special handling and removal of refrigerant prior to recycling they cannot be discarded with other waste. Appliances are accepted at the Rogue Transfer Station. All contents of the appliance need to be removed prior to disposal.
Medications and Medical Waste
  • Segregated medications and sharps for delivery to the appropriate disposal drop-off site, disposal at a Hazardous Waste Event or with a licensed medical waste disposal facility.
  • For large quantities of medications or sharps, contact our customer service at 541.779.4161. If Rogue Disposal & Recycling is not your hauler, contact your local hauler to arrange for delivery of the appropriate containers.
Concrete and Asphalt
  • Concrete and Asphalt may be recycled and should be segregated from other waste. There are various businesses that will accept this material for recycling. Such materials are not accepted at the Transfer Station. Contact us for assistance.
Other Wildfire Debris
  • Contact Dry Creek Landfill or Rogue Transfer Station to determine whether disposal is allowed at the landfill or transfer station, and for any special transportation or disposal guidelines or procedures.
Hazardous Materials and Materials Containing Asbestos
  • Debris, Ash or Soil that contain asbestos can be remediated by a certified asbestos consultant/expert and packaged for disposal in accordance with applicable laws and guidelines for disposal at DCL. For more information click here.
  • For Debris, Ash or Soil that have high TCLP or TPH testing results or contain hazardous materials contact Dry Creek Landfill (541.779.4161) for further information, click here.

Mixed loads containing ash and soil with other types of waste may, at the Transfer Station’s discretion, be accepted so long as the appropriate testing results are provided, and the ash is sufficiently mixed with the other materials so as not to become airborne when dumped. Special pricing will apply to such mixed loads.

Commercial haulers (including any trailer with more than 8 yds capacity and all dump trucks) will NOT be accepted at the Rogue Transfer Station. Use of the Transfer Station by other haulers bringing multiple loads in short time periods may also be restricted. Such haulers must bring waste to the Dry Creek Landfill. Only commercial customers with pre-established accounts (including prepayment or credit approval) may deliver waste to the Dry Creek Landfill. To establish an account and for more information call us at 541.779.4161.

The foregoing is subject to any different or additional guidelines imposed by governmental officials supervising the fire remediation and clean-up activities, and also subject to changes that might be implemented by Dry Creek Landfill or Rogue Transfer Station in order to protect its employees or comply with applicable laws, including permits, or due to operational considerations.

At Dry Creek Landfill and Rogue Transfer Station, we know the process of remediation and rebuilding after a wildfire is difficult and can be overwhelming, but we are here to help. Please reach out to us at 541.779.4161 to get answers to questions related to waste disposal services.

We are fully committed to the safety of the community and our employees while protecting public health and the environment.

Additional Resources

For additional specifics on disposal and sampling procedures at Dry Creek Landfill and Rogue Transfer & Recycling, click here.

For additional fire cleanup information and guidance from Oregon DEQ information and guidance on cleanups click here

Advice on Salvaging Damaged Family Treasures (Fema)click here

Haga clic aquí para información en español.

For a downloadable PDF of this entire page click here. En Español, clic aquí.

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