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Highway Crews Dig Into Debris

Department says debris five times that left by Hurricane Irene.

Almost six weeks after Hurricane Sandy tore through the area, the Huntington Highway Department crews have removed more than 270,000 cubic yards of debris from town roadways.

Much of that waste is ending up at Dix Hills Park, where it is turned into mulch or lumber, said Michael Naughton, a supervisor with the department, on a tour of streets last week.

He said the department hopes to have made at least one pass on every street by the end of this coming week. Workers will then return to remove other debris, work on removing stumps and do other work. “We can’t pull stumps until everything is checked with the utility companies,” he said. 

 “Our major focus is to get the roads clear now,” he said, before winter snows arrive. “We’re at the mercy of the weather.”

He estimated that the department will remove 350,000 cubic yards before it is done, compared to the 70,000 removed after Hurricane Irene in 2011.  This year’s removal is the equivalent of 9,700 dump trucks so far.

Both highway and other town officials have said that in some cases, debris has been dumped by contractors or others after roadways have been cleared.  “We had stuff dumped yesterday (Monday,) on Round Swamp Road,” William Naughton, the highway superintendent, said.

Both Naughtons said department workers had learned lessons from Hurricane Irene. “This one is four, five times as bad as Irene,” the senior Naughton said. “It taught us everything. It was good for the employees.”

He also said he was grateful that the town had allowed the use of the park and for people’s patience.

Michael Naughton said all of the work has to be thoroughly documented by the town when it is reported to the Federal Emergency Management Agency.  Workers use cameras to record trucks when empty and then filled; the truck’s logo is also recorded, and photos and paperwork submitted as proof that the debris was removed.

He said the department had been working seven days a week since the storm hit Oct. 29, with just two days off.

Sharon Tyson December 09, 2012 at 06:50 PM
Hazard Avenue north of east 23 rd st has not been cleared. There is only room for one car to pass. Thank you to all the crews who have been hard at work!! Happy holidays to all.
Sharon Tyson December 09, 2012 at 06:51 PM
Thanks to all. I look forward to updates
Pat December 09, 2012 at 10:51 PM
There are many streets off Elwood Rd. in East Northport with huge tree stumps and trunks, etc. The area between Larkfield, Burr and Elwood Roads has yet to be cleared, mainly Tinton, Hammond, Teresa and other side streets in this area. The town has been notified by several neighbors. Our thanks for all the hard work; we all know this takes time and patience! Thank you!
Pat December 09, 2012 at 10:54 PM
Happy Holidays to all and peace and health in the New Year 2013.
The Brock December 10, 2012 at 02:00 AM
Fairlee Drive and Carrington Street in East Northport also need to be cleared, as well as Allerton and Chester Street in East Northport
The Brock December 10, 2012 at 02:02 AM
Also on Grover Street and 3rd Avenue in East Northport
Pat December 10, 2012 at 02:33 AM
Yes, I have also noticed these areas you mention. I haven't seen crews in our area in several days/weeks. We are getting closer to the holidays and the snow season. Please keep alerting the town of these areas. I know they are working hard, long hours, but it is very frustrating for all of us who are still waiting to be cleared. Thank you!
Pat December 10, 2012 at 11:46 AM
Please, East Northport residents, use this blog and also contact the town highway dept. to alert them of the areas that are waiting to be cleared of storm debris. It has been several weeks now, and many of us are very frustrated. Thank you!
Gee December 10, 2012 at 01:49 PM
Please visit McFadden Drive & Stacey Ln in East Northport it is heavily used by the buses an their Personnel.. Very difficult to get by with big trees that fell in the area..there is a flood area in the middle of McFadden that if we get heavy rain this debris is going to be more of an issue..Thank you..
MJ December 10, 2012 at 11:17 PM
Thanks for all your hard work, just wondering what you are doing with all the wood chips and the lumber you are making?
Pat December 10, 2012 at 11:30 PM
I have visited the above..I ask all of you...where are our tax dollars going?? I have not seen a clean up crew in my area for weeks. Please contact the town, and the highway department. My debris surrounds a fire hydrant. This is dangerous. Also, my neighbors are complaining that the school buses are having difficulty. Even the mailmen/women have to scoot around the debris. When????? Please call the town. Thank you!!
Howard December 24, 2012 at 07:44 PM
Markwood LAne in East Northport has not been cleared. They worked on the surrounding streets SundayDecember 16 and ran out of time. Never came back to do Markwood Lane,
Pat December 24, 2012 at 08:44 PM
We've noticed the same here on Tinton Place in E. Npt. They started the clean up and completed the surrounding areas, but never returned to Tinton. We are beginning to think they will not return until the Spring-if then. Don't know why some areas are getting the large stumps/tree trunks removed, and others are not!

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