Holiday Season Feels More Like Labor Day

Thursday, December 27th 2007, 6:00 pm
By: News On 6

A contractor should be on the streets of Tulsa cleaning up ice storm debris as early as next week. The Tulsa City Council waived the normal month long competitive-bidding requirement to speed up the awarding of contracts for storm-related debris removal. News On 6 anchor Craig Day reports people all across the Tulsa area are working to clean up all the downed trees.

Christmas is gone. New Year’s is almost here, but a better description this holiday season might be Labor Day. It's taking a lot of days of labor to clean up after the ice storm. In one of the hardest hit areas, Collinsville, city workers are getting help with cleanup from city crews from Pryor, Bartlesville, Jenks and Glenpool. Others are dropping off load after load of limbs at a green waste site on 156th Street North.

"Collinsville is probably the worst I've ever seen it in the 60 years I've been around this area,” said Mike Sweeney of Collinsville.

It's the same scene in Owasso where trucks and trailers are being emptied.

"This is my 10th load I've brought out here and I've got a whole bunch more to go,” said Lynn Coltharp of Owasso.

While Lynn Coltharp is on his 10th load, Darrell Johnson lost count at about 30 truckloads.

"I thought the one in January was bad, but that's a walk in the park compared to what this is,” said Darrell Johnson of Catoosa.

So far, nearly 4,000 pickup and trailer loads of ice storm debris have been dropped off at a site off 106th Street in Owasso. The city isn't sure how long it will remain open, but based on the need; it will likely be for quite some time.

"It's a disaster everywhere. I'm just glad we've got a place to come and dump, you know,” said Darrell Johnson of Catoosa.

The city of Owasso will begin picking up debris along streets beginning Friday. Crews will cover the entire city twice over the next three weeks.

FEMA will pick up 75% of debris removal costs. The state will also pay 12.5% of the costs. The remaining amount will have to be covered by cities.

Watch the video: Still Cleaning Up Storm Debris