Get assistance with cleanup from 2020 wildfires
The State of Oregon is working with federal, state and local partners to safely address ash and debris from the 2020 Oregon wildfires. Removing fire debris is a two-step cleanup process.
- Step 1 is clearing properties of household hazardous waste to minimize exposure of hazardous materials to the public.
- Step 2 is removal of ash, debris and burned-out structures.
Find more information about the state-led cleanup process at wildfire.oregon.gov/cleanup
If you choose to do cleanup yourself
If you choose to clean up hazardous materials yourself, it will be at your own cost. Removal of household hazardous waste and debris can be an incredibly expensive process, costing as much as $75,000. Even with insurance, a majority of this cost may not be covered. The state and federal government is committed to paying for removal of household hazardous waste from 2020 wildfires, which means that property owners can reserve their insurance funds for other recovery efforts.
DEQ strongly urges property owners not to remove hazardous materials and debris themselves because of the potential risks to health and safety. If you do choose to take on ash and debris cleanup yourself, DEQ strongly recommends that you hire a DEQ licensed asbestos abatement contractor to do the work, to protect you and your family from the risk of exposure to asbestos.
The Environmental Quality Commission approved a variance from certain asbestos requirements in the context of wildfire cleanup. Some aspects of this variance apply to cleanup by a DEQ licensed contractor, and others apply to residential property owners doing their own cleanup. See the DEQ wildfire temporary rules suspension webpage for more information.