This year, and in many years past, my wife and I and others have cleaned up after bonfires created out of pallets and other objects on or near the Lake Earl Wildlife Area. I’m not against bonfires done safely in the proper area. What I am against is the non-burnable objects left behind.
Perhaps people don’t know/care that there are hundreds of nails in each pallet that remain long after the embers die. Those of us that drive, hike, run our dogs, launch our boats and generally recreate on in these public areas have to deal with those nails and other unburned objects. They are a hazard at many levels for humans, tires, boats, waders and animals. We’ve cleaned up thousands of nails in the last few years. It is a slow, tedious process and it’s near impossible to collect them all. A brief call to the DNC Transfer Station revealed it cost 87 cents to drop off 20 pounds of clean pallets. Since most pallets emanate from local businesses or government entities, it is my suggestion/request to those groups to ensure that their extra and unneeded pallets make it to the transfer station rather than our public lands.
It appears some businesses are happy to have some pallets removed by folks for their use. I understand that need, but again would encourage businesses to ascertain that they will not become fuel for fires on public lands.
If you can’t figure out a plan to help control the future location of your unneeded pallets, call me, I’m in the local phone book or call the DNC Transfer Station. They’re in there as well.