View Full Version : Tuscaloosa Tornado Debris
05-01-2011, 12:46 PM
There's obviously an enormous amount of debris. Anyone know if there will be any attempt of segregating material that can be re-used (ie: lumber)? And where will it all be taken? Hard to believe a city of 83K has a landfill large enough. Do homeowners have the responsibility of removing what's left of their homes? And would it make any difference if what was left of their home was on someone else's property?
This has to be a logistical nightmare.
05-01-2011, 02:45 PM
I think the only real answer will be "it varies".
There's already some on-line sites trying to reunite people and their possessions. It wouldn't surprise me if someone comes up with something to recycle usable stuff.
For those not in the immediate tornado path, but having debris on their property... well, in most cases they'll probably pick up stuff, have trees cut up and hauled away, and so forth. Some municipalities will help with storm clean up, some won't. Rural areas people are more likely to have to either pay for it themselves or just tolerate debris remaining where they fell.
But a lot of the building materials just aren't going to be salvageable. Wooden beams and 2x4's will be shattered and splintered, steel trusses bent and twisted, and so forth.
If a building is completely destroyed the owner may simply not have the resources to clean up if the city/town/county/whatever doesn't help. In many cases, the owners are dead and thus whether or not they're "responsible for clean up is moot. Either the neighbors or town will do it, or it won't get done. I expect there will be some walk-away people, who just abandon the rubble and start over elsewhere.
05-01-2011, 03:53 PM
Generally, the property owner is responsible for what falls on his property. If that is the neighbor's tree or a house from a mile away, the rule applies. This case will employ some exceptions. If my truck lands on your property. Someone will notify me and I will arrange to get it or scrap it using the title. You, as the property owner, would acquire a right in the truck after a period of time.
They may be able to apply some disaster rules for this tornado exception to speed the cleanup. Scavengers will no doubt be circling like vultures. If they don't have a landfill now, I bet they will very soon. Preparing that for toxic waste will take some time for clay and plastic lining, land acquisition, permitting and do forth. There is not a lot of time for sorting and recycling unless it can be done at the landfill.
I saw one destroyed home where the owner had apparently salvaged a large screen TV. I wondered whether it would ever work. People will pick through their stuff a short time and the rest goes in the dumpster.
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