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E-M:/ Toronto Trash Truck Tumbles- Local Mayors ticked!

Enviro-Mich message from RobC313@aol.com

A Canadian friend forwarded this Toronto Star (Jan 18 2001) article about a 
truckload of Michigan bound garbage that overturned on highway 401.  There 
are several mayors mentioned that could be allies in our effort to keep 
Toronto's trash in Toronto

Rob Cedar
HEAT- Hamtramck Environmental Action Team

Article: Garbage truck spills load on 401

A messy crash of a truck full of garbage on Highway 401 has magnified fears 
of traffic mayhem along the route as more trash gets moved south.

The crash crystallized area residents' concerns about the increasing number 
of transports hurtling along local highways, particularly since Toronto began 
sending much of its garbage to Michigan. 
Even assurances that the transport was not one operating for the City of 
Toronto, according to a city spokesperson, failed to ease tensions. 
``We don't need this in the suicide ballet of trucks we have rolling through 
our community,'' said Sarnia Mayor Mike Bradley. 
``Here we are 17 days into the new year,'' he seethed, ``and this is what we 
were trying to stop.'' 
The crash, he said, ``endorses what we are trying to say: Deal with your own 
garbage in your own backyard like we are doing. . . . Eventually someone is 
going to get killed.'' 
Ingersoll Mayor Michael Hennessy agreed. ``It will help our argument, yes.'' 
Mayors from this area, including those from London, Cambridge and Sarnia have 
said they plan to take their concerns to Toronto next month. 
Many private companies carry solid waste to Michigan - between one-half to 1 
million tonnes - that is not municipal waste, said Angelos Bacapoulos, 
general manager of solid waste management services for the City of Toronto. 
Bacapoulos said people shouldn't worry about the crash. 
``The traffic we're adding is less than one-half of a per cent of traffic on 
the 401. We're also sending solid, unhazardous waste. If it spills it won't 
create environmental impacts,'' he said. 
Besides, echoed Matt Neely, area president of Republic Services Inc., which 
operates one of the Michigan landfills Toronto uses, ``if there was a closer 
site to Toronto, I'm sure the city would use it. But there aren't a whole lot 
of choices for Toronto right now.'' 

`This is what we were trying to stop.' 

A deal to transport the trash by rail to the Adams Mine in Kirkland Lake fell 
through late last year. Toronto now sends about 750,000 tonnes of waste to 
Michigan, resulting in about 100 transport trips a day. After the Keele 
Valley landfill in Vaughan closes, 60-80 more trips a day could be added. 
``It's unfortunate,'' said Gordon McGuinty, spokesperson for Rail Cycle 
North, the consortium that bid to transport Toronto's garbage to Kirkland 
Lake, ``but the crash illustrates there's a far, far superior method of 
moving solid waste. There is a better alternative.'' 
McGuinty added that while one truck moves 35 tonnes of waste, one train moves 
5,000 - 143 times as much. 
Cambridge Mayor Doug Craig yesterday called upon the Ontario government to 
create more stringent waste management regulations that would prohibit 
municipalities from trucking their waste long distances, potentially making 
it everyone else's problem. 
Yesterday's crash is not the first on the highway involving a garbage 
transport. In September, 1999, one man died and two were injured after four 
transports crashed and burst into flames east of London. 
The crash closed the westbound lanes of the 401 at Regional Road 97, north of 
Ayr, for most of the day. The highway reopened later in the evening. 

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