Hundreds of streets in Bristol have recently been impacted by bin and recycling collection delays of as much as two weeks due to the failure of ‘worn-out’ vehicles due to be replaced.
Green Councillor Fi Hance has laid blame for collection delays at the feet of the Labour administration, whose indecision delayed upgrading the waste vehicle fleet.
An update on waste collection issues by Bristol Waste on 15 February listed over 100 streets each day where collections hadn’t taken place “due to vehicular issues and several vehicles being forced off the road and into maintenance”.
Many streets were due to have remaining waste collected over the weekend on Saturday 16 February, but councillors reported numerous cases where streets were again missed in these weekend collections. Councillor Hance, who served as Green Cabinet Member for Waste and Energy up to November 2017, said bin delays were caused by the administration wasting time last year by failing to come to a decision over waste collection options.
Cllr Hance said:
“Back when I was in Cabinet in September 2017 I told them that we needed to decide how we collected waste as soon as possible. We’d paid good money to a consultancy to come up with a number of options. However it seems this fell on deaf ears. A few months later Labour broke their commitment to a ‘rainbow cabinet’ by throwing out the Green, Lib Dem and Conservative cabinet members, and proceeded to waste months of valuable time dithering over new approaches to waste collection, all of which they eventually rejected in favour of doing nothing.”
“All this inaction by the Labour administration has delayed essential upgrading of the recycling vehicle fleet to the point where we now see old vehicles forced off the road and thousands of residents impacted by bin collection delays. Slipping up on providing basic services like this is bad enough, but it’s frustrating that we don’t even have any new waste collection policies to show for all the lost time and money.”
As of 1 March these issues continued to impact collection times.