City recycle truck damaged in fire

A Seymour recycling truck caught fire Thursday morning while picking up curbside recyclable toters in the Boulevards neighborhood on the city’s west side.

Officials believe the fire was a result of chemicals disposed of inside a toter.

"I have a strong suspicion that it was probably a couple of chemicals that were put into the recycling toters, and when it was dumped into the truck, the chemicals mixed and started the fire," said Bill Everhart, director of Seymour Department of Public Works. "It has happened before."

Everhart said people need to be aware of what they are recycling and to follow the city’s rules when it comes to what is allowed.

"It’s the biggest problem we have, folks not knowing what to put in the toters," he said.

Accepted items are paper, cardboard, plastic and glass bottles and cartons, aluminum and steel cans.

The fire started sometime between 9:30 and 10 a.m. on a normal residential route, Everhart said.

The driver was able to pull the truck into the parking area of Blue and Co. and get out of the cab without injury, Everhart said.

Two Seymour Fire Department trucks responded to the scene, and firefighters were able to extinguish the fire before it destroyed the truck.

Everhart reported the incident caused minor damage, but the truck will be out of service for one to two weeks. He didn’t know Thursday how much it would cost to have the truck repaired.

"There was wiring that was burnt up and cameras that were burnt," he said. "It’s functional as is, but some of the safety features will have to be replaced."

Residents should expect delays in curbside recycle pickup until the truck is back on the road, Everhart said.

"We’ll get it picked up somehow," he said. "But until we have the truck back, it might not be the normal day or time."