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Hurricane Irma Recovery
Posted on Sep 26th, 2017

Collier County’s solid waste haulers Waste Management Inc. of Florida, and Waste Connections have resumed regular curbside collection of trash, recycling, and containerized (in personal cans) yard waste.

Storm-related debris collection will be done by the county’s emergency debris removal contactor AshBritt. Storm debris includes trees, branches, shrubs and other vegetation that was downed during Hurricane Irma. It also includes downed fencing, flooring, furniture, wallboard and other debris that has to be removed from homes due to structural damage or flooding.

Hurricane Irma impacted a broader area of the county than previous storms. The storm impacted counties throughout the state – circumstances that make post-storm debris removal challenging. 

“We understand people are frustrated and want the debris to go away quickly,” said Collier County Public Utilities Deputy Department Head Dan Rodriguez. “The volume of debris caused by Hurricane Irma throughout the county and the state presents unique challenges. We are working closely with our contractors to provide additional resources as they become available.”

Among the challenges:
• Contractor shortages: Debris-removal contractors are a specialized service and many of them had allocated resources to Hurricane Harvey in Texas. Hurricane Irma impacted nearly the entire state of Florida, causing resource allocation issues.
• Temporary debris staging areas: several of the county’s pre-selected debris staging areas are not available due to flooding caused not only by the storm, but also by the heavy rains we experienced previously.
• Standing water and low wires: Contractors are experiencing some delay getting into some areas and roads due to flood waters and low hanging wires.

Collier County is addressing these challenges along with our sister counties throughout the state.

For more information, see the Frequently Asked Questions below.

What is the difference between storm-related debris and regular household trash?
Storm debris includes any trees, tree limbs and shrubs that went down in the hurricane. It also includes any fencing, flooring, furniture or wall board, etc. that had to be removed from the home due to flooding or other structural damage. This will be picked up by special debris-collection contractors.

Regular household trash are those items you would normally throw away. This will be picked up by your regular solid waste hauler on your regularly scheduled collection days.

You can prepare for the storm debris collection by having everything at the curb in separate piles. Yard waste should be separated from construction/demolition debris, including furniture and appliances. Do not put yard waste in plastic bags. The yard debris will be ground into mulch and plastic cannot be in the mulch.

When placing yard waste curbside, avoid blocking the road, driveways, sidewalks, mailboxes, water meters, backflow prevention devices, fire hydrants and utility poles. The debris will be collected using claw trucks that require room to maneuver. Placing debris pile to close to other objects could result in property damage.

For more information, residents within Collier County may dial 311, or contact Public Utilities Customer Service at (239) 252- 2380

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