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Landfill cleaning up after trash blows all over

BERRIEN COUNTY, Mich. -

Heavy winds Wednesday spread trash throughout a small area of Buchanan.

The Southeast Berrien County Landfill is now cleaning up the mess left behind.

“I’ve been the manager here for six years, and this is probably the most challenging one we’ve had to deal with,” Sonny Fuller, the general manager of the landfill said.

Fuller has had to hire eight temporary workers for trash pickup, and put four of his own employees on litter duty Thursday.

“We’re just going to stay steady at it until it is done. I do have more temporary employees who are going to show up tomorrow, and then we’re also going to work through the weekend,” Fuller said.

Cleanup is off to a rapid start start within landfill limits and at a field across the street that was covered in litter.

Employees will work their way outward, as far as the trash goes.

“I’ve seen trash as far as the St. Joe River,” Fuller said.

The general manager thinks most of the trash was whisked away during the unloading process, where trucks pay to dump garbage in the landfill.

If winds reach such rapid speeds again, Fuller says he’ll consider shutting down for a day.

 As for a long term solution, additional 30-foot barriers are going up around the landfill this summer.

It will cost the privately funded operation $60,000, but Fuller says it is worth it.

“We want to be good neighbors and try to keep the area looking nice as well,” Fuller said.

The Southeast Berrien County Landfill does not accept toxic materials, therefore contamination is not a current concern.

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