Bainbridge looking at scrap tire piles

Published 10:37 pm Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Bainbridge City Council will consider an ordinance that aims to cut down on the size of scrap tire piles around the city.

Currently, Georgia law allows certain types of businesses such as tire retailers and tire retreaders to store up to 3,000 tires on site at any given time.

According to City Manager Chris Hobby, large piles of scrap tires are problematic for several reasons.

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“Not only are they unsightly, they also pose a public health risk and a fire hazard,” Hobby recently told the City Council.

Hobby said old tires collect standing rain water, which provides mosquitoes with an ideal place to lay their eggs and reproduce. According to Public Safety Director Eric Miller, if a large pile of scrap tires stored up against a building were to catch fire, the resulting flames would quickly threaten the building.

The City of Bainbridge’s proposed ordinance would be stricter than Georgia law and limit retailers and retreaders to storing a maximum of 1,500 scrap tires. Auto salvage yards would be allowed to store up to 500 scrap tires, while individuals would be able to store up to 20 tires.

The ordinances also states that “scrap tires stored on non-residential property shall be stored in a covered shipping container, situated at least 50 feet from the nearest building, so as to provide adequate fire protection.”

Scrap tire piles could also be no larger than 50 feet wide or 15 feet tall and a 50-foot-wide fire lane would have to be placed around each pile.
The ordinance would place responsibility on property owners to properly dispose of scrap tires which were illegally dumped or otherwise stored on private property.

Hobby briefed the council on the proposed ordinance at its April 17 meeting. The council will hold another public hearing and vote on whether to adopt the ordinance on May 1.