The ECUA Materials Recycling Facility (MRF) sustained damage as a result of a fire that occurred on July 15, which required significant clean-up and repair work. The first few weeks following the fire were spent assessing the damage and investigating the source of the fire. While investigators were not able to make a final determination as to the cause of the fire, it is strongly suspected that batteries or a propane tank caught in the metals’ sorting equipment ignited, and fire erupted, in this area. This serves as a stark reminder that such combustible materials should not be placed in the recycling carts.
Once the assessment and investigation were completed, deep cleaning of the entire facility began to remove all smoke residue and fire-damaged equipment. This phase is largely complete, as is a complete inventory of damaged conveyor belts, rollers, bearings, and electrical conduit and wiring. Some of the electrical components were damaged by water in the firefighting effort. Replacements for these parts have been ordered, some have already been received, and they are being installed as they arrive. The one item that will have the longest lead time is the replacement magnet that provides the sorting capability in the metals’ sorting area. While we are waiting for its arrival, ECUA staff are evaluating the relocation of this sorting station and associated equipment to the front of the operation for a potentially more efficient process.
A specific re-opening date is not available at this time as we await replacement parts and equipment. However, ECUA maintenance crews and our contractors continue to work diligently to bring MRF operations back online as soon as possible. Meanwhile, we are still maintaining normal recycling collections and continue to urge our customers to keep in the positive recycling habit.