Tons of appliances, hazardous materials, furniture and carpeting are among the items being pulled from flooded homes and businesses in northeast Iowa. Mike Wade, an environmental specialist with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, is asking flood victims to separate “white goods” or appliances and chemicals from other trash.
“It’s the same thing we did in Cedar Rapids (in 2008),” Wade said. “At the curb, just separate them out so there are separate piles with stuff that can be taken directly to a landfill. A contractor can decommission the white goods so they can be disposed of properly and then the household hazardous wastes like paints and those types of things can be taken to a facility to be properly disposed of.”
The DNR is working with waste disposal companies to coordinate flood debris pickup. Wade says much of the debris will end up in the Dubuque County landfill. “So, we’re trying to work out those details now of how we can actually get stuff picked up not only at Lake Delhi, but Monticello and all the places up and down the river,” Wade said.
Businesses are required to contact a contractor who can verify that no asbestos is in the building materials that may need removed. Wade says building materials likely to contain asbestos include ceiling and floor tiles, insulation and slate siding.