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Pasadena residents call lingering debris 'maddening'

December 28, 2011 12:00:00 AM PST
It's been nearly a month since powerful winds pounded foothill communities, causing millions of dollars in damage and knocking out power for days.

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So why are some streets still littered with branches? That's what angry neighbors want to know.

One scoop at a time, Pasadena city crews are whittling down the debris piles around the city. Workers are focusing on residential streets where there are blind corners, dangling tree limbs or other safety issues.

They say they have cleared about 60 percent of the debris.

But in neighborhoods where the wind damage is more of an inconvenience, residents are still waiting.

The wind snapped branches off a Magnolia tree on city property next to Charles Weisgerber's house.

"It blocks the sidewalk, you can't clean your lawn,you can't water your lawn, you can't park your car. It's just maddening," Weisberger said.

The city says it first needed to clear trees on major city streets.

"We wanted to make sure that people who needed to get to work and school could do so," said Ann Erdman, spokeswoman for the city of Pasadena.

The city also made sure to clean up the 5.5-mile route for the Tournament of Roses

"The next worst disaster in Pasadena would have been for us not to be prepared for the Rose Parade," Erdman said.

The city has a dozen crews removing 360 dump truck loads of leaves and limbs a day, but getting to everyone takes time.

"It's just an eyesore and it needs to be done," Weisgerber's said. "I think 2 1/2 weeks is a pretty long time."

The city said any debris left in the yards of residences must be placed in the homeowners' green bins for the city to pick up.

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