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Experts offer tips on how to prepare property for storm season

August 9, 2017
Special to THE CITIZEN ( , Lehigh Acres Citizen

The recent Tropical Storm Emily provides a good reminder to Lee County residents that excessive plant growth can cause property damage during summer storms.

Lee County Solid Waste and UF/IFAS Lee County Extension offer the following steps to prepare your yard before, during and after a storm:

Pre-storm maintenance

- Cut back any trees or branches that contact your house, pool cage, shed or other buildings.

- Thin foliage so wind can blow freely through branches, decreasing chances the plant will become uprooted during a storm.

- Place trimmings at the curb on your regular collection day. Yard waste must be containerized or securely tied into bundles not heavier than 50 pounds and no longer than 6 feet in length. Up to 50 pounds of unbundled palm fronds may be placed at the curb.

- Clean your property of any items that could become a projectile during a storm and place them at the curb on your regular waste collection day.

Named storm, under watch or warning

- Do not cut down trees and do not do any major yard work. Mass cutting produces a burden on the normal collection process.

- Do not begin construction projects that produce debris unless absolutely necessary to protect life and property.

- Secure all debris and do not place materials of any kind at the curb during a watch or warning period.

- Services may be suspended and facilities closed early to prepare for the storm. For information on the status of collection services and disposal facilities, visit: or monitor local media.

After the storm

- Most important - keep storm debris separate from your regular household garbage and recycling.

- Storm debris should be sorted into separate piles for garbage, yard waste, appliances and construction debris.

- Pick up will generally be done with a mechanized claw truck, so it is important that you not set debris over buried electric/phone lines, water meters, hydrants or mailboxes. Inspectors will tour each part of the county to determine where collection needs are greatest.

- Be patient. Following a storm, the No. 1 priority is collecting household garbage. Uncollected garbage attracts pest and can spread disease. Vegetative waste can wait.

- Debris collection guidance and recovery process updates at:

Source: Lee County



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