Bin collection will resume soon

Residents are frustrated with sporadic refuse collection during the public lockdown.

The City says every effort is being made to maintain delivery of basic services despite the threat posed by Covid-19.

Current indications are that delays should not last for more than a week, and in most cases, backlogs will be cleared more quickly, it says.

The City’s solid waste teams will work on weekends to clear any backlog, says Mayco member for water and waste Xanthea Limberg.

“We’ve taken every legal step available to address the backlog in refuse collections and have procured the services of two private contractors to assist with collections,” said Ms Limberg.

Contractors had also committed to working extended hours to work on major repairs so that more trucks could be released and reduce the backlog.

The backlogs were due to the vehicle repairs and the need to outfit staff with protective gear, including gloves and masks.

Staff had been briefed on hygienic practices and social distancing, she said.

It was difficult to predict the impact to services going forward, she said, but poor and overcrowded neighbourhoods were taking priority as there was a greater risk of the disease spreading quickly in those areas.

The City advises the public to do the following during lockdown:

· Take bins out by 6.30am, and leave them outside until 9pm until collected.

· Do not resort to illegal dumping if collection delays cause refuse to build-up to the point where it cannot fit in the wheelie bins. Excess refuse that cannot fit in the wheelie bins will be collected until this problem is resolved.

· Waste coming from a property where someone has or is believed to have Covid-19 should be double-bagged.

· Practice social distancing and do not approach staff as they go about their duties.

· Wash and disinfect wheelie bins regularly, especially when placing them outside and when bringing them back inside.

· To prevent flies breeding, retain and freeze any meat product (i.e. leftover food in the form of chicken, red meat, off cuts, etc) until collection day before placing into the bin. Also store the bin in a cool place, avoiding direct exposure to the sun.

· Where possible, practise home composting. This will allow further space in the bin during this period. Visit http://www.capetown.gov.za/City-Connect/Activities-and-programmes/Cleaning-and-recycling/home-composting-programme on how to do home composting

· Wash your hands thoroughly after handling your waste

* Submit service requests to 0860 103 089, or https://eservices1.capetown.gov.za/coct/wapl/zsreq_app/index.html and take note of the reference number provided.

* Drop-off facilities, including the household hazardous waste drop-off facilities at Bellville and Athlone refuse transfer stations, and the Bellville composting plant are closed to the public during the lockdown.

Collection of recycling from areas receiving the Think Twice service will continue.

Special waste, as defined in the City’s tariff policy will only be accepted on request and in emergency situations. Compliance with permit conditions will be adhered to.

Street cleaning services will continue in the city, particularly in informal settlement and high-density areas and central business districts.