Advertisement
Canada

What happens to all the fridges thrown out after Fort McMurray wildfire?

WATCH ABOVE: Many homes in Fort McMurray lost power for an extended period of time. That means, a lot of people are throwing out their fridges - and everything inside. Fletcher Kent has more on the stinky cleanup.

Thousands of Fort McMurray residents are returning home to houses that have been without power for upwards of a month. That’s lead to a rather smelly situation inside the kitchen where rotten, mouldy food is now living inside people’s refrigerators.

It’s one thing to clean out your fridge and start fresh, but what’s being done with the thousands of appliances that have to be thrown out?

While some fridges will be okay (see instructions below), residents have been told not to even open the doors as everything has been spoiled.

READ MORE: Slave Lake evacuee offers words of advice to Fort McMurray residents

Right now, residents are being asked to leave their trashed fridges on the curb by 3 p.m. for pickup. The municipality has contractors in charge of collecting the appliances and bringing them to the landfill.

Story continues below advertisement

Since Tuesday morning, 847 fridges have been dumped at the Fort McMurray landfill. Once there, seven or eight people are tasked with de-gassing the fridges to get them ready to be recycled. About five compaction units are on site to crush them.

READ MORE: Maggots, fungus among things Fort McMurray wildfire evacuees find after returning home

In preparation of the mass fridge-buy, local stores are stocking up. The Brick, for example, has ordered 15,000 new fridges to help with the putrid problem.

“We’re ready to go. We’ve got delivery trucks, we’re going to do seven-days-a-week service. Whether that inventory is here ready to go for next-day delivery or as well as two days out, three days out, whenever that customer is ready,”Geoffrey Gunther with The Brick said.

“We want to be seven days a week service for delivery and pickup,” he said. “We’re going to go as long as the community needs us to do it… This is our home too and we want to let the public know we’re here to stay, we want to be a part of it.”

READ MORE: First day back: Fort McMurray hardware store sells 6 months’ worth of fridges in 1 day

The massive fridge cleanup effort is being coordinated by the Insurance Bureau of Canada.

Story continues below advertisement

Some fridges can be kept as long as they’re deemed safe. If you have insurance coverage, you’re asked to call the company and follow their instructions.

Instructions from the Insurance Bureau of Canada on what to do with your fridge have been posted below: