Piles of Hurricane Ian debris line the streets of Hillsborough, Pinellas Counties

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Hurricane Ian toppled trees and broke branches at construction sites in the Tampa Bay area. Raking, sawing and bagging are mostly done, leaving the streets on both sides of the bay strewn with large piles of debris.

Bound storm collection yard waste in Tampa started a week ago. The city has about 30 crews working 12 hours a day, seven days a week.

“If you have debris in your yard, take it out, put it out front, on the sidewalk, and we’ll pick it up,” said Larry Washington, director of solid waste management and environmental programs, after the passage of storm. “Make sure you have five-foot clearance, and we’ll come get it as soon as we can.”

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You can check the current status of debris collection where you live online. City officials said it would take up to 60 days to clear the damage from Hurricane Ian.

In Hillsborough Countycontracted disaster debris haulers began collecting large storm debris last Thursday.

“We are asking residents that very small things need twigs, things that cannot be picked up by hand or with a grappling hook, to go ahead and wrap that material up or put it in a container,” said Travis Barnes, Sustainable Materials Manager. said last week.

Vegetation should be trashed, bagged or piled near the sidewalk this week or residents can bring storm debris to the county’s four residential drop-off sites. An online map also lets you see where crews are working in unincorporated areas.

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We are told that the objective is to have the majority cleared in 30 days.

“We turn all of our plant debris into mulch,” said Mike Jefferis, administrator of St. Petersburg Recreation Services.

Residential clean in St. Petersburg started last Wednesday. Officials said about 16 crews made up of city employees are in neighborhoods picking up debris and estimate it will take about five weeks to clear each street.

You are asked not to put any yard waste in a bag, only include plant debris and pile everything at the edge of your property, away from other trees, fire hydrants or signs.

“If it fits in the residential container, go ahead and do it,” Jefferis said. “We are really looking for these logs in this debris that does not fit in the containers provided by the city.

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In unincorporated Pinellas County, residents should make their own arrangements for the removal of large storm debris. Small items can be placed in trash cans and disposed of by your regular municipal or solid waste hauler.

For areas where crews are picking up debris, they ask for your patience over the next few weeks as they work systematically to do the collections.

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