February 28, 2021

Two fires spark proper battery disposal reminder

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CAYMAN ISLANDS (GIS) – Cayman Islands Fire Service (CIFS) has been mobilised to the George Town landfill site this week for two unrelated small fires.

At a mixed waste facility, there is an ever-present risk of ignition when materials are disposed of together. In particular, the disposal of electronic items and batteries in the general garbage can easily cause fires in the landfill.

The Department of Environmental Health (DEH) has experienced high volumes of mixed waste through December and January, which increases the risk of ignition during the processing and disposing of that waste.

Residents and businesses across Grand Cayman are reminded of the important safety role they play in ensuring batteries and electronic goods are separated from mixed waste when they are disposed.

Batteries should never be placed in normal mixed waste or general recycling bins. Instead, batteries should be recycled using the proper battery recycling service provided at all major supermarkets. Batteries should be removed from broken devices and recycled separately.

If the battery cannot be removed from the device, both may be recycled together using the small waste electrical recycling facility located at the George Town landfill drop off, which is accessible 24 hours a day.

Chief Fire Officer, Paul Walker, QFSM said “CIFS has a fantastic working relationship with DEH colleagues. It is their diligence in the early notification, the fact these were small surface waste fires and not deep-seated veins of fire and the prompt deployment of CIFS resources and firefighting equipment that has prevented further fire spread and limited the impact of these two small fires on surrounding resident and businesses. The minor excavations and damping down was precautionary and aims to reduce the chance of re-ignition from any unseen hotspots.”

“We continue to work closely with DEH colleagues as the landfill site is developed and extended to ensure this facility is as safe as possible. I encourage all residents and businesses across Grand Cayman to do their bit in segregating and recycling their waste to keep volumes of mixed waste to a minimum and help avoid further fire incidents.”

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