Our services in the snow

If there is snowy and icy weather, we may not be able to empty your bin(s). We are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause you. Find out more using the links below:

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What to do if it snows?

Please put your bins out as normal providing it is safe to do so, and we'll do our best to empty them, provided it is safe for us to do so. If your bin(s) is not emptied, please check back on this web page, to see what do next.

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Catch-up rounds & festive collections

During the snowy and icy weather before Christmas, we suspended all collections of brown bins. Because of this we will be carrying out special garden waste catch-up collections during January, so please put your brown bin out as normal on the week commencing 8 or 15 January 2018, depending on when you normal brown bin collection day is (please see your bin calendar which were delivered before Christmas).

After this collection, your brown bin will only be emptied if you are signed up to our new garden waste scheme. It costs £36 a year per bin for the garden waste service. You can sign up at any time throughout the year, although the charge remains fixed at £36.

To sign up to the garden waste scheme, please fill in our online form. You will be asked for your debit/credit card to make a payment. We will then send you a sticker to put on your bin within 10 working days. You can also sign up by phone on 0345 002 0022, however you should find it's much easier online and phone lines are very busy.

 Fill in our online form to sign up.

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Why we can't always empty bins

We do all we can to empty your bin/s during snowy and icy weather, but we also have to be mindful of the safety of local people, our drivers, our crews, our vehicles, and cars parked on streets.

Our trucks are very heavy, particularly when they have a full load, and we need to be sure that they will not slip or slide, or cause damage to parked vehicles, buildings or pedestrians before we move into a street.

The decision on whether or not it is safe for our vehicles to drive in certain areas or streets will be made by our drivers locally. 

Our drivers will take into account the driving and weather conditions at the time they arrive in an area, and the physical nature of the roads that have to be driven down. Find out more in our FAQs below.

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What we'll do when we can't empty some bins? 

If a driver decides that it is not safe to drive in an area/street, he/she will report this to their manager. This will then be relayed to our customer service team, so we can let any residents know when they call in for updates on 0345 002 0022.

We'll also post an alert to this webpage as soon as we can, as well as inform local newspapers and radio stations.

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Why do we sometimes prioritise catching up on missed black bin collections?

If we miss bins, we may have to prioritise catching up on black bins, rather than blue bins. This is because black bins often contain sanitary products, such as disposable nappies.

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Why do we sometimes stop brown bin collections?

Brown bins are also usually emptier during the winter months, so we sometimes stop brown bin collections so we can use the staff and trucks from the brown bin rounds to catch up on other missed bins - such as black and blue which are usually fuller, particularly over the festive period.

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Why can't we just get more trucks and staff to catch up on all missed bins?

When the weather is bad across the country, lots of councils need to hire in more trucks to deliver extra collections. We often hire in extra staff and trucks, but this is done on a case by case basis.

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Why couldn’t you take blue bin rubbish and black bin rubbish at the same time?

We use different trucks to collect different types of rubbish. This is because recycling waste goes off to the recycling plant, black bin waste goes a waste power plant, and brown bin waste goes to be composted, and they can’t be mixed when we collect them.

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Why do you ask people to put extra recyclable waste in clear-ish plastic carrier bags?

We ask people to put extra recyclable waste in clear-ish plastic carrier bags (such as carrier bags from supermarkets) because it helps our crews when they are emptying bins at speed, to see what’s in them. 

If we put black bin waste in with recyclable waste, the whole load of waste would be contaminated. This means it won’t be accepted at the recycling plant, and it will be taken to the waste power plant instead, so we have to be really careful

Clear-ish carrier bags help our crews to make sure they are putting the right waste in the right trucks.

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How can I find out what's happening during snowy weather?

We post regular updates to this page and also put messages on Twitter and Facebook.

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What if I don’t have a computer - how can I find out what to do?

During snowy weather, our customer services telephone system provides regular recorded updates, so even if you are put on hold, you can find out what the latest update is straightaway by dialling 01543 308000.

When possible we send information to local newspapers and radio stations.  

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Why can't you send out leaflets to tell us what to do?

Sending out over 40,000 leaflets to households is a huge undertaking and very costly. Also because things change so quickly when it snows, by the time we had produced and distributed a leaflet, it's likely things would have changed. Equally delivering a leaflet in snowy conditions would be difficult in many areas.

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Shopmobility and other services

Other services like Shopmobility may be cancelled during snowy weather, if it is not safe to use the vehicles/wheelchairs on the street. If any of our services are cancelled, we will update this page with details as soon as they are available, as well as inform local newspapers and radio stations. 

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Why don’t we grit all the local roads so they aren't slippery?

We don’t look after the gritting of local roads. This is done by Staffordshire County Council.

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Any questions?

If you have any questions, please call 0345 002 0022 - this is charged at a local rate.

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Get in touch or visit...

Our location and travel details >>

Phone our contact centre: 01543 308 000
District Council House, Frog Lane, Lichfield, Staffs, WS13 6YY

If you need to contact a team direct, please visit our contacts page for team phone numbers and email addresses.

Opening times

Our main reception at Frog Lane in Lichfield is open Monday - Friday, 8.45am - 5.15pm.

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