Flood of rubbish rushed into landfill
Council is confident it can handle the mountains of rubbish that are flooding into transfer stations.
The pavements and footpaths of Brisbane's flood-ruined suburbs are a lingering reminder of the awful week that was.
Furniture, photos, memories and stinking mud are piled metres high, baking in sun and waiting to be discarded.
The question many are asking is: How long will it take for the debris to be carted away? And where is it all going to go?
The most striking photos of the floods
The flooded Brisbane River spills into residential areas close to the CBD. Photo: REUTERS/Tim Wimborne
It's a mammoth task for Brisbane City Council staff, private operators and volunteers, who have been enlisted to help with the Herculean task of disposing of the city's mountains of flood-related waste.
It's the next stage in the great clean-up operation and the council has asked for patience from residents who are growing increasingly desperate for the rows of foul debris that used to inhabit their homes to be shifted from the suburbs.
“Council will be able to dispose of waste safely but people need to be patient. The transfer stations and landfill are extremely busy and residents are asked to be patient and take care with the increased volume of vehicles at these sites,” a council spokesman said.
Some of the figures surrounding the rubbish are staggering. The Rochedale landfill, which will house much of the waste, usually receives around 800 tonnes a day. By Sunday, the monthly total was already 20,866 tonnes, more than 8000 tonnes ahead of normal operations.
On a regular day, the landfill site receives around 100 trucks per day. Currently, around 950 trucks per day are dumping their flood rubbish.
The council spokesman said residents shouldn't be concerned about council running out of room at the landfill or transfer stations due to the enormous pressure the flood has put on space.
“Debris and rubbish will stay in landfill, which has sufficient capacity to manage the waste. The landfill is designed to cater for Brisbane's waste until 2019,” the spokesman said.
“There is plenty of area at the landfill site to operate and there are two brand new areas onsite that can be opened if necessary. There are also other landfill facilities in the Brisbane area that can receive waste and rubbish.”
The spokesman urged residents undergoing a post-flood clean to try to ensure perishables and food waste were kept separate from general flood waste such as furniture or carpets.
“It is extremely important that perishables are kept separate from flood-affected waste where possible, such as furniture and building materials, so that they can be disposed of correctly,” he said.
“Council seeks residents' assistance in this effort by placing perishables in the bulk bins provided in flood-affected areas.
“The demand to collect perishables is enormous but council is continually supplying food waste bulk bins to flood-affected areas and is well resourced to deal with the collected perishables.”
Residents should avoid any materials they suspect to be hazardous and contact council immediately on 3403 8888.