SWP will deploy all available resources this week in an effort to maintain collection services and to catch up on any areas missed.
The advice to residents remains to place recycling and refuse out when safe to do so. SWP will aim to return to pick up fortnightly collected materials within five working days and weekly collected materials within two working days.
But with the situation complicated by Christmas and New Year changes to the schedule, if disruption prevents a full catch-up this week, homes missing collections may not be collected until their next scheduled pick-up in the first week of January.
SWP severe weather guidance sets out what will happen if collections are missed, including crews working overtime and on Saturdays to try to catch up on missed collections.
Key advice points from SWP include:
- If collections are missed, efforts will be made to return to pick up any refuse or recycling as soon as possible.
- If a weekly collection is missed, householders should put it out for collection for the next two days (excluding Sundays). If a fortnightly collection is missed, it should be put out for the next five days (excluding Sundays). In both cases, if not collected within the advised time, put it out for the next usual collection day, providing it is safe.
- Additional waste and recycling materials will be accepted on delayed collections. Extra refuse should be placed in black sacks and extra recycling in carrier bags put out with boxes.
- No catch-up services will be provided for garden waste or clinical waste collections missed because of severe weather, and these collections may be temporarily suspended to focus resources on restoring waste and recycling collections.
- Recycling centres can take recycling and waste if collections are missed but it is best to check to ensure the centre is open before travelling.
- Residents are urged to check that neighbours, especially the elderly or vulnerable, know what arrangements are in place.
- During severe weather, daily updates on the situation are posted on the SWP website at www.somersetwaste.gov.uk.
- Follow us on our @SomersetWaste Twitter feed at http://twitter.com/somersetwaste, or Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/pages/Somerset-Waste-Partnership/128826580486763
Holiday collection changes
The changes for collections affected by the Christmas and New Year holidays have already been listed on the SWP web site. In summary:
- Usual collections and catch-ups continue up to and including Friday 24 December.
- With one exception, all collections from 27 December to 7 January occur one day later.
- Exception is Friday 31 December, whose collections will take place on Sunday 2 January.
- Normal collections resume on Monday 10 January.
Bins and boxes
SWP is advising householders to keep bins and boxes in a sheltered spot, where possible, such as in a shed, garage or the lee of the house, will protect them and their contents from freezing.
If a bin or box does freeze, please do not try to release the contents with boiling water (this will freeze, too), by hitting it (frozen plastic shatters more easily), jumping up and down on the bin contents (this risks serious injury), or forcing the lid open (allow lids to de-frost naturally).
Do not worry if the contents of the recycling box, such as paper, get wet. However, please keep dry any clothing and shoes (tied in pairs) by double bagging them.
Homes with coal fires must allow ashes to cool thoroughly before putting in the plastic wheelie bin. Ashes from wood fires can be used in home composting, but do not home compost coal ash.
During severe weather, daily updates on the situation are posted on the SWP website at www.somersetwaste.gov.uk.
Follow SWP on the @SomersetWaste Twitter feed at http://twitter.com/somersetwaste, or Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/pages/Somerset-Waste-Partnership/128826580486763
All Somerset media are informed of the latest situation.
Residents can always call or email their district council customer services.