Waste collections in the snow

As the freezing weather persists we are finding that all waste collection services are being disrupted.

All crews are out attempting to complete collections where conditions allow (and to catch up on the "missed" collections from last week).  Of course we want to collect all waste if we possibly can.  However there are many areas where it is simply not safe to do so.  Generally it is the more rural areas which are the biggest problem.  The main 'A' roads and bus routes in large towns like Shrewsbury are well gritted and we are mostly getting collections done in these areas however it is not as simple as urban/rural split each area needs to be assessed on a case by case basis on the ground by the drivers.

Its a very serious matter when you are responsible for driving 26 tonnes worth of laden vehicle down an icy residential street packed with cars and pedestrians.  So of course we adopt a precautionary approach because the consequences can be so extremely risky with ultimately the danger of causing a death.  We'll keep trying and hope the weather improves but when it comes to the crunch though, safety must always come first and bins come second. 

If we are unable to collect bins - be assured we will return - so the message is to leave your bins out.  However if we cannot collect recycling boxes we ask you to accept our apologies on this occassion and bring your boxes back inside (because they're a trip hazard on the pavement).  We will not make a return pass for recycling boxes but we will collect them on your next scheduled collection day.

Waste collections are important, probably one of the most vital and visible of all Council services, but ultimately staff and public safety and human lives always take priority.  The crews are doing a fantastic job out there braving these extreme conditions so please be patient and accept our apologies if your waste is uncollected and our assurance that we will catch up on all "missed" bin collections as soon as it is safe to do so.

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James Thompson James Thompson

Waste Prevention Officer, Waste Management, Shropshire Council

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