DNREC Closes Polly Drummond Yard Waste Site Due To Second Fire

The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control announced Thursday that a second ground fire of unknown origin at the Polly Drummond yard waste site within a week’s time has caused DNREC to shut the northern New Castle County site until further notice.

The second fire drew local fire companies to the yard waste site Thursday morning, forcing its immediate closure for public health and safety concerns at least until DNREC can determine the cause of the fires. DNREC also is looking into how a recurrence of these blazes might be prevented on the Delaware State Parks’ land where Polly Drummond is sited in what is essentially a residential area.

Images: Blue Keystone Aerial Imagery

DNREC said In an abundance of caution, they are closing the site earlier than originally planned (January 17) until the Department can determine how to best address what’s become a real and threatening problem to keeping the yard waste site open in the future – or for reopening it in the spring.

The safety issue behind the closure was magnified because of the site’s accepting Christmas trees for recycling into organic mulch – and the possibility that a blaze could break out again and threaten residents who had come to the site to dispose of their trees after the holidays.

DNREC has operated the Polly Drummond site since 2008 when it opened seasonally – from spring to fall, and then after the holidays – for use by the public. The Polly Drummond site was one of three “demonstration” yard waste drop-off sites in northern New Castle that the General Assembly put under DNREC’s administration after yard waste was banned from Delaware landfills in 2007. Polly Drummond is the last of those sites remaining, and the only one currently in operation.

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