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Companies Agree to Concrete Cleanup After Talks with Smith

Dec. 19, 2007 — Concrete spilling out of the back of mixer trucks has posed problems on St. John roads for years. But following meetings with St. John Administrator Leona Smith, the two St. John concrete companies have promised to clean up after themselves.
Cheryl Sturgess, "chief cook and bottle washer" at Majestic concrete requested that if residents notice a spill from a Majestic or Centerline concrete truck to call the company — not the office of the St. John administrator or a senator.
"If we know about it right away, we can deal with it," she said. Sturgess said that once the concrete hardens, it's more difficult to get up.
"This concrete thing is a mess," Smith said.
Sturgess and Centerline Concrete manager Doug Dupont both said the concrete spills out when trucks head uphill.
Dupont said that trucks sometimes lose speed, which causes the rotating barrel on the back of the truck to slow down and spill concrete.
Both companies don't fill their trucks to their maximum capacity. Dupont said Centerline's trucks hold 10 yards, but the trucks are only filled to seven or eight yards. Sturgess said Majestic's trucks hold 12 yards, but carry only eight to 10 yards depending on how steep the hills are between the plant and the building site.
Sturgess said the concrete companies don't want the concrete to spill out of the back of the trucks because it costs them money for wasted concrete and causes problems on the road.
Dupont said Centerline Concrete has been waiting for tires for its backhoe to pick up the hardened concrete. The tires have arrived, and he estimated the two companies would commence cleaning up the concrete along the roads by mid-January.
Smith said the most serious problems are at Long Mat Hill on the East End, at Reef Bay, in Contant at Roy Sewer Hill, and along Gifft Hill Road.
The agreement with the companies came following a round of meetings held by Smith and Deputy Public Works Commissioner Ira Wade with Majestic and Centerline.
“These meetings were an important next step in responding to the community’s concerns regarding the areas adversely affected by concrete spillage," Smith said.
According to a Government House press release, time was spent gathering information and collecting feedback, as well as reminding Majestic and Centerline of the need for proper and efficient handling of all concrete run-offs. In response to complaints received from the general community, and in an effort to provide administrative oversight of the situation, the meetings were called to assess best practices in providing for cleanup of the areas affected and in order to avoid concrete spillage in the future, whenever possible.
“We wanted to be sure to remind the concrete companies that compliance regarding the management of concrete spillage is a critical issue impacting the natural environment and all residents of St. John. We would like to thank the community for sharing their concerns with us, and we encourage the continued dialogue with residents in order to continue to provide for a safe, clean, and healthy island lifestyle for all,” Smith said.
Smith will continue to hold meetings with community partners, including businesses and residents, in an effort to promote open dialogue and compliance with established rules and regulations and in order to provide leadership on community concerns.
Residents wishing to register a complaint may contact Smith's office at 776-6484.
Call Majestic at 776-6633 and Centerline at 715-9730.
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