Contractor to handle additional debris pick up

Published 7:35 pm Tuesday, January 15, 2019

The U.S. Corps of Engineers contractors will continue to pick up storm debris from Hurricane Michael in Bainbridge and Decatur County through Friday, Jan. 18, and a private contractor will continue with the job afterwards.

Residents are asked to have all storm debris ready for pickup on the right of ways by Sunday, Jan. 27, to be picked up by the contractor.

“That’s almost 16 weeks post-storm,” said Bainbridge City Manager Chris Hobby. “If it’s out by that date, it will be gotten.”

Hobby said the City of Bainbridge and Decatur County put a contingency plan in place in the event that the Corps of Engineers contractors wouldn’t be able to pick up all the storm debris by its Jan. 18 deadline. After accepting bids from various companies, the Bainbridge City Council voted for “Crowder Gulf” to handle pick up duties once the Corps of Engineers contractors were done. Decatur County is expected to vote on approving the contractor at its Board of Commissioners meeting next Tuesday.

The debris must be eligible under FEMA guidelines in order for the cities and county to be reimbursed for debris removal costs. Eligible debris includes debris that threatens the lives, public health or safety of residents any debris that threatens significant damage to improved public or private property and debris that includes vegetation, construction or demolition debris, sand, mud, silt, gravel, rocks, boulder and vehicle and vessel wreckage.

All debris put out for pick up must be storm debris. Hobby assured that if it’s storm related debris, and it’s on the curb by Jan. 27, it will be picked up.

After Jan. 27, city residents will be responsible for cutting all debris into 4-foot sections, putting it by the road and contacting the city for normal debris pickup. County residents will be responsible for burning, grinding or hauling the remaining debris.

Private contractors will be responsible for removing any debris from any job they preform and disposing of it properly.

The Corps of Engineers contractors or Crowder Gulf will not be able to go onto private property to retrieve debris, said Hobby. Debris will need to be at most roughly 20 feet from the pavement to be picked up.

“You are going to have to figure out some way to get that onto the road,” said Hobby. “There is no provision for us being able to go on private property.”