Keep hot materials, including coals, out of garbage carts

Marlene Feist, Utilities Communications Manager, 509.625.6505

Thursday, October 31, 2013 at 1:21 p.m.

The City of Spokane Solid Waste Management Department is asking residents today to refrain from placing hot materials, including fire or barbeque coals in their garbage carts, dumpsters, or other containers.

Today, solid waste in one of the City's garbage trucks caught fire. When the solid waste load was examined for the cause of the fire, City officials discovered hot coals.

“This message is important as we head into the winter when many people use fireplaces and wood stoves as a primary or secondary heat source,” says Scott Windsor, the City's Solid Waste Management Director. “We want to protect the safety of our citizens and employees.”

Ashes and coals can remain hot enough to start a fire even when people think the fire is out. To properly dispose of ashes or coals, the City's Solid Waste and Fire departments recommend the following:

  1. If possible, allow ashes and coals to cool in the area where you had the fire for several days. These devices are designed to contain their heat safely.
  2. When it is time to dispose of the ashes, transfer them to a metal container and wet them down.
  3. Keep the metal container outside your home and away from any combustibles.
  4. Add the cooled ashes to your garbage cart on garbage day to be hauled away.