Post-Matthew Clean-Up

— Written By Diana Rashash and last updated by
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Matthew has made a very soggy ending to an already wet summer for those of us in eastern NC. For some of us, the water is going down; for others, it is still rising. The wind added a lot of vegetative debris to the situation.

Do be careful while cleaning up. Keep an eye out for displaced critters, such as snakes and fire ants. Also watch out for poison ivy, which can be mixed in with the other debris.

If you are piling your debris for local pick-up, please be sure to NOT place the material where it can get into a roadway or clog a storm drain. It needs to be placed in your yard, near the curb. Do not place debris near a waterway! It can clog flow. Also, as it decays, the process uses oxygen and adds nutrients to the water.

Now may be a good time to check drainage ways and ditches. Many neighborhoods have drainage easements. These are the owners responsibility to maintain, unless such maintenance is part of a HOA agreement. Are there any clogs, either from debris or sediment? If safe to do so, clear the material such that flow can resume and the material doesn’t create another clog. The neighbors up-flow of you will appreciate the water being able to exit.

Speaking of neighbors, take the time to help any neighbors who cannot clear debris on their own. This is especially true for the elderly or disabled.