Public Works Team Played Crucial Role in Storm Recovery Efforts

Arlington Public Works Storm Recovery

Working traffic signals and unobstructed roads are two things we often take for granted. When the Oct. 2 high-wind storm visited Arlington last week, many residents were left without electricity and noticed how difficult it was to navigate the City without the amenities that the Public Works Department maintains.

But immediately following the storm, Arlington’s Public Works crew went to work, enabling residents to resume normal life as soon as possible.

“After natural disasters, these guys work tirelessly to reroute the City, and often people don’t know.” Field Operations Manager Caryl DeVries explained, noting that they team worked until midnight last Thursday to make the roads safer. “Public Works employees are what I consider the unsung heroes. We’re all affected by what they do but we don’t see them.”

To get an idea about how hard the team worked, here are a few things they accomplished between Thursday night and Monday night:

  • 1,033+ hours worked to date by 59 hourly workers (does not include salary crew members)
  • 107 City dump trucks dumped storm debris at the City’s landfill, which equals 1,442 cubic yards or 320 tons of material
  • Responded to 70 traffic signals that were without power
  • Fielded and responded to 147 calls about trees blocking the road and 41 calls about street lights

Update: As of the end of the day Tuesday, here is the total amount of debris Public Works has disposed of:

  • 166 City trucks hauled 2,318 cubic yards of storm debris to the landfill, which is 514.62 tons of material

Their hard work didn’t go unnoticed. One resident commended Public Works on their efforts in an email to City leaders:

“Please thank the city crews that worked overnight to clear the roadways of downed trees and debris. I was out and about just after the storm yesterday and again this morning – what a task and what a difference. Please commend those crews for a job well done.”

While crews have made significant progress, Public Works crews will continue to work to clear all roadways throughout the city. Officials expect this to take a few more days. And crews are still working on adjusting small things like signs that have turned slightly.

Important Information About Residential Storm Debris

Trash Pickup: Republic Services will continue to pick up unbundled tree limbs and fence panels curbside in residential neighborhoods through Oct. 18 on your normal trash collection days. Please make sure limbs and panels are no longer than 4 feet and weigh no more than 50 pounds. Due to space restrictions, your debris may be picked up on a later trash day if not removed on your next collection day.

Trash Drop-off at Landfill: Residents have through Saturday, Oct. 11, to drop off storm debris (tree limbs and fence panels only) free of charge at the Arlington Landfill. During this time, no coupon is required; however, citizens will need to provide proof of residency with a current driver’s license or water bill.

After Oct. 11, residents will need to either use their free landfill coupons or pay the regular residential landfill rate. To reach the landfill, call 817-354-2305.

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John Donica
Guest

How does the pickup program actually work? Both mine and my neighbors debris has been curbside since the morning of the 4th and has not yet been picked up. Someone stopped by yesterday afternoon and took all the firewood sized pieces from my neighbors and this morning the same thing happened to mine but the brush is still there.

jay.warren
Admin

Hi John. Thanks for your inquiry. The Republic Services crews are picking up as much as their trucks can hold, in addition to regular trash pick up. First priority, it regular trash pickup. So, it may take them a few days to get everything cleared, due to the size of the storm and the amount of damage it created across the city. That is one of the reasons Republic Services waived its normal bundling requirement until Oct. 18 for all storm debris.

John Donica
Guest

OK, so the guys in the pickups with trailers are just opportunistic I take it about free firewood.

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