Garden waste collections suspended due to HGV driver shortage
The council’s waste and recycling contractor Serco has made every effort to attract drivers, by offering increased salaries and enhanced benefits packages, with some applicants currently being recruited or trained. But a number of driver vacancies are still not yet filled.
Agencies, who are also affected by this shortage in a fast-moving market, are unable to provide staff to fill gaps.
Therefore, the council has had to take the difficult decision to temporarily suspend garden waste collections due from the week of Monday 4 October in Basingstoke.
The suspension is not related to the current fuel situation. All existing garden waste customers will be contacted by letter to advise them of the pause in service.
The council will review the situation regularly and hope that, if the HGV driver availability improves, the service will start again in November.
However, Serco will continue to catch up on the backlog of garden waste collections that were due during the week commencing 6 September across Basingstoke and Deane and subscriptions will be extended to cover missed collections.
Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Recycling and Waste Hayley Eachus said: “We’ve tried hard to keep the garden waste collections running despite the continuing challenge of COVID-19, but the increasing impact of the national driver shortage means we now need to temporarily pause the service. We believe it is better to suspend the service rather than continue with the uncertainty customers are facing about collections currently.
“We apologise for the disruption and understand that it is frustrating for our customers, who we thank for their patience and understanding. Our bin crews have worked hard for more than a year, since the beginning of the pandemic, to keep our waste services going despite all challenges they have faced.”
Updates will be provided on the council's websites and social media channels.
For more information on bin collections in Basingstoke and Deane visit www.basingstoke.gov.uk or follow @BasingstokeGov on Twitter or Facebook.