Refuse workers accused of 'launching' food caddies to be investigated

Residents have taken to social media to flag incidents where kerbside caddies have been found damaged.

Edinburgh refuse workers accused of ‘launching’ food recycling bins to be investigated by council iStock

Complaints that Edinburgh refuse workers allegedly “launched” food recycling bins back onto the pavement and left them broken are being investigated by City of Edinburgh Council.

Furious residents have taken to social media to flag incidents where kerbside caddies have been found damaged after being emptied.

One resident said on Twitter that “almost all” of the food bins on Barntongate Drive had been “launched back onto the pavement” leaving “many of them now broken or requiring attention”. 

Sharing several photos of emptied containers on his street left on their sides with lids broken off, he described the alleged actions of cleansing staff as “totally out of order” and added he had “never had any issues up until this morning”.

Others have reported that faulty food bins can attract rodents and cause a nasty odour, especially during hot summer months.

A Roseburn Maltings resident, who goes under @FeistyScotland on Twitter, said: “The refuse collectors broke the lid off our food bin whilst emptying it. In the heat the smell is awful and the flies and rats are having a field day.”

Both follow  a complaint made in May, when a resident tweeted the council reporting the same problem on Brunstane Road South, saying: “Please ask your refuse collectors to be more careful with bins, that’s our food caddy broken again, barely one month old.

“Just got new landfill bin as bin lorry “ate” the last one and just got new glass tub as collectors broke that one.”

The resident argued there is a “culture of treating bins carelessly as they’re replaced easily”, adding this comes with a “cost to the taxpayer and the environment”.

The council’s environment convener Scott Arthur said: “The council expects residents to place their bins on the footpaths in a way which minimises any obstruction to pedestrians, so I think it’s right that the council shows the same amount of care when returning them after emptying.

“council staff are trained and should have the time available to handle waste and recycling bins properly, including returning empty food caddies to kerbside locations.

“The council is investigating this complaint, as they do with all complaints, and take any necessary action in line with our policies and procedures.”

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