Iowa City Landfill fire covered

Millions of tires burned during the 15-day fire at the Iowa City Landfill. Photo courtesy of Aneta Goska and the Iowa Flood Center.

The Iowa City Landfill is once again open to the public following a series of fire-extinguishing efforts.

The “stir, burn, and cover” operation that began June 4, which started by stoking the flames to accelerate the consumption of fuel, ended Sunday as the smoldering remains were covered by a layer of clay.

The tires are expected to burn beneath the layer of clay for at least a few days, and during the time city officials are directing their efforts on containment.

“It could be several weeks,” Geoff Fruin, assistant to Iowa City manager Tom Markus, said Monday. “We’ll monitor the temperatures below the surface. We’ll be able to see any continued burning through surface burning or smoke that breaks the cap.”

The landfill may still occasionally produce smoke, and fire crews will remain on-site to monitor the situation, but no large plumes or flare ups are expected.

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