Use caution around trees damaged by the winter storm. Stay well clear of trees that may be leaning or that have loose hanging limbs. Eugene Public Works is making headway in cleaning up tree debris on city streets, but much work remains and several parks are still closed. Flooding has made some areas and bike paths unusable. To report a hazard, call Public Works at 541-682-4800. To report down power lines, call EWEB at 541-484-2300.
What to do with all that debris?
Eugene Public Works is still responding to hundreds of reports of trees and branches on local streets. When crews have finished cleaning up streets, they’ll start cleaning up the mess in city parks. Most of the material in the public rights of way is chipped to become mulch. Large pieces of wood are cut into shorter lengths and chipped later. Occasionally a piece may be large enough to be used as material for lumber. Any wood left in the right of way after the tree crew finishes clearing streets is free for the taking until crews return for cleanup.
So what can private property owners do with the debris left on their properties after the storm? One thing they can’t do is place debris in the street. The city code prohibits placing any material in the street except leaves (and that’s only during leaf season).
Here are some options:
- Use a pickup truck or trailer to haul debris to a commercial recycler such as Rexius or Lane Forest Products (a small tipping fee is charged).
- Hire a tree service or landscaping company to clean up and haul debris away. Share pickup costs with a neighbor.
- Chop twigs and wood debris into small pieces and fill yard debris containers.
- Rent, borrow or buy a chipping machine and make mulch for garden paths or other soft surfaces or form a Community Tool Co-op. Contact us if you want help getting started.
- Chop woody materials into a smaller size. Leave soft plant parts in larger pieces for effective composting. Attend one of the free composting classes from the Extension Office to learn easy ways to make composting part of your routine.
For more information, call Public Works Maintenance at 541-682-4800.