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Thanet council defends decision to suspend waste collections after snowfall

Thanet District Council logo
Thanet District Council logo

by Martin Jefferies

Thanet council defended its decision to suspend rubbish collections after heavy snow and icy conditions this week.

The authority faces a major backlog after around 25,000 households were missed on Thursday and Friday, with larger, 26-ton refuse trucks unable to safely access many side roads.

It was feared the trucks, which cost more than £100,000, would have skidded into parked cars or property or mounted pavements, endangering the safety of local people.

The council said that although public transport was operating normally in most areas, bus routes accounted for only five per cent of roads served by waste collection teams, with treacherous conditions on untreated side roads.

Mark Seed, director of environmental services, said: "We'll be working hard to clear as much rubbish as possible next week, with extra staff drafted in from elsewhere to help make collections.

"Our staff will spend the weekend clearing the worst affected areas and we should be back on an even keel within days."

Cllr Shirley Tomlinson, cabinet member for environmental services, added: "Our teams are doing everything they can to deal with the backlog."

Of the 25,000 homes on Thursday and Friday collections, around 3,000 dispose of waste in black bags - two-thirds of which have already been collected.

Other residents who were due to have rubbish or recycling collected on Friday will have non-recyclable waste picked up next Friday (January 15), although no recycling collections will be made.

Those who missed collections on Thursday will have black wheelie bins or black sacks collected next Thursday (January 14) - again, at the expense of recycling.

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