In a statement released Tuesday, Bloomington Police Captain Joe Qualters says it could take two weeks to search the Sycamore Ridge landfill in the Vigo County town of Pimento for the body of missing IU student Lauren Spierer.
Even though 20 to 30 law enforcement personnel will participate in the search, the area which must be combed holds approximately 168,000 cubic feet of garbage.
A search warrant for the site was issued in June, but officials from the FBI and Republic Services, the trash company which owns the site, declined to offer information on when a formal search might begin. Searches began around 7 a.m. Tuesday and media are being kept off the property as the operation continues.
Republic spokeswoman Peg Mulloy tells Indiana Public Media that waste entering the site comes from several places in South-Central Indiana, but is tagged and sequestered in several ways — most often by the day on which it is delivered.
In the police statement Qualters says garbage brought in from Bloomington around the time Spierer disappeared has been set aside for the two months she has been missing, waiting to be picked apart.