Smoke billows from the back of a City of Swan garbage truck. Supplied: City of Swan

Truck fires spark hazardous waste warning from LGAs

Fires in garbage trucks within the City of Kalamunda and Swan have led to hazardous waste reminders from the mayors.
March 28, 2024
Gera Kazakov

TWO separate instances of rubbish catching fire in the back of a garbage truck has led to the cities of Kalamunda and Swan reminding residents to dispose of hazardous waste correctly.

On Monday, March 18, the City of Swan waste team had to pull over when team members noticed smoke coming from the truck.

The City of Swan said that numerous aerosol cans, a portable gas container, and a battery were some of the items found in the back of the truck, which received minor damage.

City of Swan Mayor Tanya Richardson said the fire was extinguished quickly and there was no injury to staff.

“On average we see about five or six truck fires a year,” she said.

“Hazardous waste poses a serious risk to the public and environment due to its reactivity, flammability, corrosiveness, or toxicity and should always be taken to the appropriate waste management facility for disposal.”

Prior to this, in the final week of February, a Cleanaway rubbish truck had to dump its contents at Maida Vale reserve after smoke was detected inside the truck, leading to DEFS coming and extinguishing the fire.

The City of Kalamunda said there were no injuries and that a lawnmower with fuel was the likely source of the fire, saying the incident underscores the importance of proper waste disposal, particularly hazardous items such as petrol, electronic waste, motor oil, paints, chemical waste, aerosols, and batteries – all of which are not accepted in the general waste bin.

Mayor Margaret Thomas said the incident shows proper disposal of hazardous waste is vital for the safety of the community and the environment.

“I strongly encourage residents to visit the city’s website to locate the nearest drop-off points for their household hazardous waste,” she said.

Red Hill Waste Management facility has free hazardous waste disposal for all hazardous waste items excluding asbestos.

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