Update: ECUA Recycling Facility Open After Weekend Fire

October 2, 2022

UPDATE: The Emerald Coast Utilities Authority’s Materials Recycling Facility will be open Monday and will be accepting recyclables on a normal schedule.

Earlier story:

Less than a week after reopening, a fire broke out Friday night at ECUA’s recycling facility, but officials are hoping it will be running on Monday.

The fire was reported about 6:15 Friday in the ECUA Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) in what is known as the “plastics bunker”, according to ECUA Public Information Officer Nathalie Bowers. She said smoke and flames were able to reach the presort room above the bunkers through discharge chutes.

The heat triggered just four sprinkler heads, two in the presort room and two above the plastics bunker. Bowers said this helped limit the fire, and Escambia County Fire was able to quickly contain the fire shortly after arrival.

“The machinery had been off since 1:30 pm Friday and there is no machinery or electrical equipment in this bunker area, so the source of the fire is not likely anything related to equipment,” Bowers said. “Due to the mass of melted plastics in the bunker, we were unable to confirm what materials in the plastics bunker caused the fire. This serves as a reminder to our customers that only accepted materials should be placed in their recycling container.”

A preliminary review of the area revealed limited damage to one wall in the presort room, lighting fixtures and ceiling tiles. The sprinkler heads were set to be replaced on Saturday.

“ECUA staff will replace the fixtures, check wiring in this area, and inspect the belt to confirm that there was no damage,” Bowers added. “At this point, we are cautiously optimistic that normal operations will be able to resume Monday and will confirm that after the inspections are completed.”

The recycling facility was closed in June after an equipment failure and just returned to service last Monday, September 26.

In July 2021, a fire damaged the ECUA MRF at the Perdido Landfill in July 2021, shutting down the recycling program until October 2021.

NorthEscambia.com file photo, click to enlarge.


9 Responses to “Update: ECUA Recycling Facility Open After Weekend Fire”

  1. Lizzz on October 3rd, 2022 9:18 am

    ECUA is better than what was here ???? ok I give what was here ,???
    I have trash from last week’s pick up still setting in my yard, that only God knows how it was left , took a real brain wave to get the trash on the left of me and the right of me too totally pass my can up !! Go
    figure. They want ,want, want but can’t seem to get anything right.
    I’m totally discussed with this company

  2. Wayne on October 2nd, 2022 7:14 pm

    @ Barto Sankezewicz
    Facts, derived from Investigations into a cause, effects and preventitive measures…
    Not a premadonna supposition.
    Feel enlightened sir.
    Your welcome.
    Anything else I can educate you on today?
    God Bless.

  3. Barto Sankezewicz on October 2nd, 2022 4:19 pm

    “Supposition is always the distraction from facts.

    And what would those facts be for which there is distraction? Yes, there was a fire. Yes, I have seen it happen to garbage trucks numerous times. Please help me to understand the distraction you assume I am attempting. Perhaps we will all benefit.

  4. Let’s fix this on October 2nd, 2022 2:02 pm

    Is it cheaper to give customers two weekly trash pickups, and hire unemployed environmentalists to sort out the recyclables by hand? Some tree huggers might just volunteer, or pay commission on aluminum recycling revenue. Let’s get creative.

  5. In The Know on October 2nd, 2022 12:01 pm

    “This is getting repetitive now. We really need the state to step in on this private company.”

    Except ECUA is not a private company. It is the government. ECUA is a local governmental body created under state law.

  6. Wayne on October 2nd, 2022 11:43 am

    @ Barto Sankezewicz
    Supposition is always the distraction from facts.

  7. Barto Sankezewicz on October 2nd, 2022 10:33 am

    Probably charcoal disposed of in some careless customer’s recycle container. It is not unknown for garbage trucks to dump on company property as quickly as possible due to smoldering garbage. It is often caused by charcoal disposal.
    In response to Dr, It’s probably not a good idea to vote them out but that’s my thought simply from experiencing what was in place before ECUA. ECUA is a smooth operating, well oiled machine compared to what was in place before.

  8. Lb on October 2nd, 2022 8:03 am

    This is getting repetitive now. We really need the state to step in on this private company.

  9. Dr on October 2nd, 2022 6:47 am

    ECUA. Wants a raise .. VOTE THEM OUT

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