Waste crews working hard in tough circumstances

8 July 2020

As more people understandably work from home, Thurrock is experiencing the nation-wide trend of increasing waste tonnage, which has impacted household waste collections in the borough.

Cllr Aaron Watkins, Cabinet member for environment, said: "Extra pressures created by coronavirus mean that our waste collections are not operating as they normally would. With residents working from home, or furloughed, we are seeing a significant rise in the amount of waste households are producing.

"Increased waste loads mean more work for crews on collection rounds and that they have to take waste lorries back to the depot, or the tip site in east London, more frequently than usual to empty the especially heavy loads they are carrying.

"There are also far more cars parked in the day time which can cause an obstruction preventing lorries from getting access to some roads.

"We apologise to any residents who have experienced difficulties and I can reassure you that our crews are working extremely hard to make up any collection short-falls."

Over the past few weeks a combination of households producing more waste and waste collection staff having to self-isolate and stay away from work has meant that crews have missed some collections. The service is working hard to bring in additional staff from outside the council but current social distancing regulations and guidance make this more difficult.

Cllr Watkins said: "We appreciate how important a regular waste collection service is to our residents and the council is doing everything possible to resolve current pressures.

"It would be much appreciated if residents could help our crews by compacting recycling as much as possible and remember that while we are only able to make fortnightly garden waste collections, they should continue to dispose of food waste as general refuse in the grey or green bin."