Orange County extends hurricane debris removal deadline

Crews expect to complete debris cleanup by Dec. 7

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Orange County officials have extended the debris removal deadline from Hurricane Irma by two more weeks.

Piles of debris can still be found all over Orange County more than two months after Hurricane Irma hit. Residents told News 6 they are frustrated it is taking so long for all the debris to be cleaned up.

"We can't do anything (sic) about it," resident Angel Lopez said.

Large piles of tree limbs and debris line Heatherington Road. Lopez said what makes this even more frustrating is they aren't even his trees.

Lopez said his neighborhood was a mess after Hurricane Irma.

"My whole yard was flooded and trees were all over, damage all over," Lopez said. "You pretty much couldn't drive through here at all. "

A few weeks after the storm, Lopez said Orange County picked up all the debris and their neighborhood was clean. 

"After they cleaned it up, like two weeks after that, FEMA came by and trimmed off whatever excess and there are the results of them," he said pointing to the debris.

Lopez's neighborhood is just one of several across Orange County still waiting for debris removal.

Orange County officials initially told News 6 they hoped everything would be picked up by Thanksgiving. News 6 found out that deadline is now pushed back to December 7.

County officials said crews finished the first round of debris removal and they are going back through, picking up anything that is still left behind.

According to the emergency debris removal map, the county still hasn't scheduled when crews will get to Lopez's street. Lopez said he just wants his neighborhood debris-free again.

"Can they clean this for me? Please, keep it neat? If not, I can add more. They might not like that," he said. 

To help with debris removal, county officials are urging residents to separate vegetative debris, like tree limbs, branches and shrubs. These items should not be bagged. If you have leaves, residents are asked to bag the leaves and the bags will be collected with normal yard waste on the designated day for your neighborhood. Residents are also reminded to not block fire hydrants, storm drains, water meters and mailboxes with debris.

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