PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) — Clean-up efforts have begun after Hurricane Ian left behind lots of damage across Florida.

Many residents in Pinellas County may be wondering what they should do about debris, damage and used sandbags following the storm.

Pinellas County leaders offered tips on what you should do:

What to do with debris on your property:

  • Residents of unincorporated Pinellas County: Small branches and associated debris can be bundled, bagged or placed in trash cans for regular pick up by waste haulers. For larger debris, property owners need to make their own arrangements for removal. Residents can take large amounts of debris to Pinellas County Solid Waste, 3095 114th Avenue North, St. Petersburg, which will be open Friday and Saturday from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Normal disposal fees apply.
  • City residents: Check with your municipality for debris removal instructions.

Here’s how to report damage to your home or property:

If you have storm-related damage to your home, report it at Click the tab for “Report Damages to Your Home.” Although you must file private property damage with your insurance company, documenting these damages with the County can help our community apply for possible state and federal aid during our recovery.

Reporting damage to roads or other public property (e.g. trees blocking roadway)

For sandbags that did not come into contact with floodwaters:

  • Keep and store clean sandbags for preparation for future events. Hurricane season runs from June 1 through Nov. 30, with most storms occurring between mid-August and late October.
  • Spread sand on lawns or landscape beds. Place the empty bags in your garbage bin (do not place the bags in your recycling bin).
  • Pinellas County Environmental Management advises residents to not dump their sandbags onto the beach. Sand used to help stop flooding may be different from beach sand and can cause issues for turtle nesting, among other problems.

Sandbags that have come in contact with flood water can become contaminated with bacteria.

For sandbags that have come into contact with floodwaters:

Please do not dispose of any sand or full sandbags in your regular trash. The sand does not burn and will not convert to energy in the county’s Waste-to-Energy Facility.  Furthermore, do not mix sandbags with yard debris. The sand is abrasive and damages equipment used to grind yard debris into mulch.

For more information, please call the Department of Solid Waste at 727-464-7500.