City areas used as dumping grounds in Burnaby

As the weather warms and people feel the urge to purge and tidy up, Metro Vancouver is asking residents to dispose of their garbage properly during their spring cleaning.

Illegal dumping can be a significant issue in the region, Burnaby included. Some of the most common items dumped are mattresses, furniture, appliances, carpeting, tiles, green waste and large amounts of household garbage.

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Dumping slows down over the winter – apart from regular incidents at the end of every month when people are moving – and picks up again in March, says Mike Demeda, superintendent of solid waste and recycling for the City of Burnaby.

garbage illegal asbestos
City workers regularly clean up bags of drywall like these dumped on city streets and on laneways, often contaminated with asbestos. - Contributed

The city uses a lot of resources on illegal dumping, he says, sending out up to four garbage trucks a day just to clean it up.

“I feel like they’re dumping in my backyard, that’s how I personally feel. It angers you, right?” he told the NOW. “You go to clean it up and, a day or two later, something else is there.”

Some of the hot-spots for dumping in Burnaby are at Barnet Highway and Cariboo Road, 18th Street and 11th Avenue, Venture Street and Lake City Way, and in cul-de-sacs at Manchester Drive, and off Cardston Court, and Horne Street. The City of Burnaby is using cameras in some of these locations to catch dumpers.

In April, Burnaby’s waste department responded to at least 12 dumps that included drywall, ranging from three or four bags, and up to 30 bags in one dump. Some of that drywall could be contaminated with asbestos.

Demeda is encouraging people to take their garbage to the landfill, and call the city as soon as illegal dumps are spotted to prevent others from adding to it.

If you have large items like couches, mattresses or appliances, call the city to arrange for pick-up, at 604-294-7972. Drywall and other construction materials can be dropped off for a fee at the New West Gypsum Recycling at 38 Vulcan St. in New Westminster.

To find the right place to bring your waste, visit metrovancouver

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