Mattress shredding eases landfill strain

Date published: 8 April 2019

Townsville City Council has engaged a contractor to shred thousands of flood-affected mattresses and slash their size by up to 85 percent at local waste management facilities.

Approximately 10,000 mattresses have been shredded at Council transfer stations since the unprecedented monsoon.

Townsville Local Recovery and Resilience Group Chair Deputy Mayor Les Walker said the contractor has used a slow speed shredder to separate the steel springs from the foam.

“Mattresses have been a big issue for us since the monsoon and we’ve been working to reduce their impact,” Cr Walker said.

“The shredder cuts the size of mattresses by up to 85 per cent and that is a significant amount given we’ve shredded around 10,000 mattresses.

“Breaking up the mattresses has saved us around 5,000 cubic metres of landfill space.”

Townsville Water and Waste Committee Chair Cr Russ Cook said the foam goes to the landfill but the inner springs are recycled.

“For every 800 mattresses we shredded we have averaged 12 to 14 tonnes of steel,” Cr Cook said.

“We’re effectively diverting the metal away from the dump to recycling, which will reduce our need for landfill space.”