Don’t throw hot coals, fireworks in the garbage

Hot Coals
Credit: City of Spokane

SPOKANE, Wash. — It’s Fourth of July weekend, which means many families will be breaking out the barbeque to grill up some grub. But the city of Spokane wants you to remember to keep hot materials out of the garbage.

Already this year, solid waste has caught fire in city garbage trucks. City employees discovered that hot coals were to blame.

“This message is important as we head into the July 4th holiday weekend and summer season when people are enjoying outdoor cooking and recreation,” says Chris Averyt, Spokane’s Solid Waste Management Director. “We want to protect the safety of our residents and employees.”

To be safe this season, treat all coals and ashes as if they are hot. Even when they are cool to the touch, internal temperatures at their cores could start a fire.

To avoid starting garbage fires, you should:

  • Allow ashes and coals to cool inside your grill or wood stove for several days.
  • Wet the coals down and move them to a metal container when they are ready for disposal. Move them away from your home and other combustibles.
  • On disposal day, bag up the wet coals and put them in your container for collection.

Fireworks, however, are required to be taken to the Waste to Energy Plant at 2900 S. Geiger Boulevard. Do not throw away your fireworks and fire stations will not accept them.

The Spokane Fire Department encourages the community to celebrate the 4th safely by enjoying a public display provided by licensed Pyrotechnicians.

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