A Hampden waste plant keeps finding American flags in the garbage, so it’s planning a proper farewell

Sep 1, 2019 by

Amid the many tons of garbage that have flowed to the new waste processing facility in Hampden, workers have made an unpleasant discovery: Some broad stripes and bright stars are also streaming through the muck.

More than 30 American flags have been plucked out of the waste that arrives each day at the Coastal Resources of Maine plant off Coldbrook Road.

The plant’s staff is working with Hampden officials and a group of local Boy Scouts to provide a more gallant ending for the national flags that Mainers have been chucking in with their old food scraps, Amazon packaging and other rubbish.

The bulk of the flags seemed to arrive in June, possibly because people were replacing their old flags ahead of the upcoming July 4 festivities.

They came in different sizes, materials and conditions, with some brand new in an unopened box, and others tattered and soiled, possibly from their recent ride on the dump truck.

For now, when technicians find the flags in the piles of waste that are dumped at their facility and sent through a series of sorting machines, they pull them out and hang them along the railings of the multi-story equipment, according to Shelby Wright, the facility’s director of community resources.

“Pretty soon it won’t be green-and-yellow anymore,” Wright said of the machinery, which has the color scheme of a John Deere tractor. “It’s going to be red, white and blue.”

Photo Courtesy of Coastal Resources
Workers at the new Coastal Resources of Maine waste processing facility in Hampden have been recovering American flags that have been thrown into the waste stream. The town of Hampden is planning a retirement ceremony for the discarded flags.

Source: A Hampden waste plant keeps finding American flags in the garbage, so it’s planning a proper farewell — Bangor — Bangor Daily News — BDN Maine

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