Council forced to ditch new waste scheme

By Roddy AshworthA COUNCIL'S new system of separating rubbish in special lorries was abandoned as it tried to tackle a backlog of waste.The new waste trucks, designed to carry recyclables and ordinary refuse in different compartments, were introduced in the Colchester borough in April.

By Roddy Ashworth

A COUNCIL'S new system of separating rubbish in special lorries was abandoned as it tried to tackle a backlog of waste.

The new waste trucks, designed to carry recyclables and ordinary refuse in different compartments, were introduced in the Colchester borough in April.

But since the lorries took to the streets, rubbish has piled up around the town because the vehicles' various compartments filled up at different rates - leading to extra journeys back to refuse centres or some types of waste being left on the roadside.


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Dustbin crews were ordered last week to give up on trying to separate waste and each lorry was assigned instead one type of rubbish to collect.

However, garden waste that should have been collected on Wednesday was still stacked up on some streets in Colchester yesterday.

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Paula Whitney, of Colchester Friends of the Earth, branded the new system a “shambles” and called for the new lorries - which cost £750,000 - to be sent back.

“The large compacters which used to collect the rubbish took 12 tonnes of waste. The new ones take six tonnes in one compartment and two-and-a-half tonnes in the other,” she claimed.

“They are currently using the split vehicles as a single vehicle. They are just being used to collect one sort of rubbish.

“I want the council to send them back as 'not fit for purpose' and get the money back because we need 12-tonne trucks for the garden waste.”

Terry Sutton, the Colchester borough councillor with responsibility for waste, confirmed the refuse collection system had been changed in an attempt to catch up with the backlog.

“We are trying all sorts of methods at the moment. We have been trying to see how we can better use the vehicles while this large quantity of waste is coming out,” he added.

“I am clearly not pleased with how this has gone, but I know full well it is getting better week to week.”

roddy.ashworth@eadt.co.uk

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