Dealing with Storm Debris

Assessing Damage from Storm Events

Storms affect every city differently. Sometimes only small sections of a town may experience severe damage. The cities in our service area follow Polk County Emergency Management's damage assessment guidelines for storm events. Those assessments allow the city to decide if routine collection is sufficient or if some areas warrant a special collection or drop-off event.

Special Collections

When a city is offering a special collection or drop-off event for residents due to a storm, information will be posted here. We also encourage you to check your city's website, as they may have more current information.
Previously scheduled special collections are also listed on our website here.

Routine Collection: Compost It! Guidelines

In most events, the cities will ask residents to use routine collection to dispose of their tree branches, limbs and leaves. Below are some tips to ensure collection through the Compost It! program.

Brush Bundles

Each bundle requires one green Compost It! sticker and cannot exceed:

  • 40 lbs.
  • 4 feet in length
  • 18 inches in diameter


Large branches can be included in brush bundles but must be cut down to a manageable size and cannot exceed:

  • 4 feet in length
  • 10 inches in diameter

Logs, Stumps, Rocks & Dirt

These items are not accepted. See options in our Recycling Guide or use Large-Item Collection.

Year-Round Drop-Offs

Residents who don't want to cut branches down or want to expedite the cleanup can also use the year-round drop-off locations.

Altoona, Bondurant, Carlisle, Clive, Des Moines, Grimes, Johnston, Norwalk, Pleasant Hill, Polk City, Urbandale, West Des Moines and Windsor Heights.

NOTE: Ankeny residents can contact their garbage hauler for yard waste curbside collection. Learn more.