The sound of saws and wood chippers is going to be heard in and around Des Moines for several more days. A storm packing high winds last Friday left part of Des Moines and several of its suburbs littered with downed tree limbs — and in some cases whole trees. Des Moines Public Works Director Bill Stowe says they’ve been working hard, but the clean up is still a long way from being completed.He says people continue to pull limbs out of their yards, and it’ll take clear through the end of next week to just get downed trees hauled away. The city has chippers to handle the smaller limbs, but the large logs have to go into a special “tub grinder.” It’s a large device that looks like a washtub. The large logs are put in the tub and are ground over and over into wood chips. The cost of the clean up for Des Moines residents will be as high as the pile of wood chips after all the limbs are ground up. Stowe says the cost could be as high as a quarter of a million dollars. The clean up costs come out of the city’s garbage collection fund, and he says it’ll likely result in higher garbage rates.He says they’ll probably have to ask for a rate increase sooner than they anticipated to make up the cost of the clean up. The good news — there’s plenty of free wood chips available.
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