What to Do With the Sandbags?

Less adrenaline, more toil ahead for Midwesterners
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Jun 24, 2008 8:32 AM CDT
Illinois Air National Guard member Heather Richard, of Peoria,Ill., helps fill sandbags along the Mississippi River in Quincy, Ill., Wednesday, June 18, 2008.    (AP Photo/Seth Perlman)
camera-icon View 4 more images

(Newser) – Sandbags were saviors for many in the Midwest flooding—but as the waters recede, the hefty lumps remain, often weighed down by all the toxins in the water, the Washington Post reports. Bags can weigh 60-80 pounds even when dry, so heaving one after another to the curb for pickup is a serious task, especially without the hordes of adrenaline-driven volunteers rushing to protect communities.

“I've got about 2,000,” says an Iowa man who had the help of two dozen volunteers in piling them on. But carrying the bags to the curb “is the real hero part,” he notes. (Read more flooding stories.)