January 11, 2013

Tips for Safe Disposal of Ashes from Fireplaces and Woodstoves



Now that winter is officially here, residents are reminded that fireplace and woodstove ashes retain enough heat to ignite other combustible materials for several days after a fire. The rule to remember is: never put ashes in a paper or plastic bag, cardboard box or plastic bucket.

The Division of Solid Waste Services (Dept. of Environmental Protection) joins the Montgomery County Fire Rescue Service in reminding residents of how to safely dispose of ashes. For example, never put out ashes from fireplaces for collection with regular household trash unless they have been thoroughly soaked with water in a metal ash bucket with a tight fitting metal lid (designed for that purpose), or held in place for at least a week to ensure there are no residual embers.

Store any container holding ash outside, away from structures, decks, fences, wood piles or other combustible materials. Ashes retain enough heat to ignite other combustible materials even several days after a fire.

Cooled ashes may be brought to the Shady Grove Road Processing Facility and Transfer Station for disposal in specifically-designated ash containers. The Transfer Station is located at 16101 Frederick Rd., Derwood (off Rt. 355 at Shady Grove Rd.).

Learn more about how to safely dispose of ashes.

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