Mulch piles catch fire at Knott Landfill in Bend

Knott Landfill Fire

You may have noticed smoke and fire coming from the area of Knott Landfill in Bend Thursday afternoon

Bend Fire and Rescue said several large piles of mulch caught fire in the Deschutes Recycling yard at the landfill. The fire was spread by strong winds.

Firefighters stopped the fire with water from their ladder truck.

“The piles are reported to contain as much as 20,000 yards of yard debris that has been ground down into mulch,” Bend Fire and Rescue said in a statement. “This product goes through a process of decomposition in piles to eventually create compost. During this composting process, heat is generated which helps break down the material and eliminate unwanted seeds from weeds and noxious plants. In this case, it appears the winds that picked up this afternoon as a weather front moved in a hot spot was fanned into flames and the fire spread. An estimated 2,000 yards of material appear to be effected by this fire.”

RELATED: Half-price yard debris recycling event at Knott Landfill starts Oct. 29

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Deschutes County and recycling employees will stay on the scene Friday to remove the burned mulch and put out any hot spots in the piles.

There is no indication that the fire will affect Knott Landfill ore recycling center operations Friday.

Deschutes County recently shared the video below of rock blasting at Knott Landfill. It’s a routine measure which is part of the effort to ensure that the landfill can continue to be used until 2029, when it’s expected to reach capacity.




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