Handling Tornado Debris: Use Caution

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Release date: 
February 19, 2007
Release Number: 

ORLANDO, Fla. -- Private property owners and renters should use caution when separating storm debris to be moved to the curbside for pickup.

Storm debris usually falls into one of three categories:

  • Common household products, usually cleaners, aerosol cans, and pesticides;
  • Appliances or "white goods", refrigerators, stoves or other large appliances; and
  • Household furnishings such as carpeting or other flooring, furniture and mattresses.

Storm debris might contain materials which could pose health or safety hazards such as:

  • Propane containers, petroleum-based solvents, cleaners and paints;
  • Asbestos-laden debris from unabated buildings; and
  • Fertilizers or pesticides.

If tornado-related debris contains suspicious or possibly hazardous material, property owners should call their local fire/rescue non-emergency number before handling or moving those debris items.

FEMA manages federal response and recovery efforts following any national incident, initiates mitigation activities and manages the National Flood Insurance Program. FEMA works closely with state and local emergency managers, law enforcement personnel, firefighters and other first responders. FEMA became part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on March 1, 2003.

Last Updated: 
July 16, 2012 - 18:46
State/Tribal Government or Region: 
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