Bin collections on track

Bin collections are back on track after suffering from weeks of disruption due to bad weather across the county.

Widespread snow and ice brought roads to a standstill and caused a backlog of bin collections as trucks were unable to access some streets.

Crews working in the Broadland area started work at their Frettenham depot as early as 6am in temperatures as low as -15C (5F) to thaw out frozen bin lifting mechanisms on their trucks before they could begin their day’s work.

Figures from Broadland District council show that less than 1,200 out of 30,000 collections were missed, and the vast majority of those were because poorly parked vehicles had made it impossible for the bin lorries to get through. Many of the bins that had been missed were collected the next day.

Alison Falconer, spokesman for Broadland District Council, said: “Our collections are all up to date now. We were not too badly affected by the weather. The most people had to wait was one extra day. The worst affected area was Hellesdon as some of the roads did not have much through traffic so the road stayed icy.”

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City households bore the brunt when roads were unsafe for collection vehicles to drive down. Norwich City Council made provisions for contractors to work on a Saturday to try and clear some of the backlog.

Susan Robinson, 51, a respiratory research assistant from Bramfield Close, Norwich, said: “Our recycling bin was not emptied from December 4 until December 29. We contacted the council and they said they would be coming to collect our recycling on December 24, which was the day our general waste was due to be collected.

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“Our food waste and general waste was emptied but our recycling and glass bins were not. We have four adults living in our house so we generate a lot of rubbish, especially at Christmas. In the end my husband, Kenneth, took the rubbish to the dump in the back of our campervan. It is strange that two trucks can make it up the close but another one can’t. If the road was not safe enough for the trucks, why didn’t they get the gritters up here?”

However, a spokesman for Norwich City Council said that its bin collections had been back to normal since the end of last week.

South Norfolk Council issued a safety plea to people driving near bin crews and their lorries after an incident when a refuse loader suffered from a broken leg and pelvis in Saxlingham Nethergate.

Debbie Storey, spokesman for South Norfolk Council said: “We had very little disruption due to the bad weather. A few roads were too slippery to get down, but we have since caught up. Collections return to normal the week beginning Monday January 17.”

The coast was the least hit by the Arctic weather and Great Yarmouth Borough Council reported that all collections had been unaffected.

A statement on the North Norfolk District Council Website said: “Currently, all waste, recycling and clinical collections for our domestic and trade waste customers are up to date. There are still some delays with garden waste collections, which will be collected when crews start work again after the Christmas bank holidays.”

The weather has not affected bin collections in west Norfolk.

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