It’s snow problem now for St Albans binmen

THESE snowshoes were made for walkin’ – and that’s just what they did when the district experienced severe weather conditions prior to Christmas.

St Albans council is putting the fact that the collection of wheelie bins was maintained as well as it was in the snow and ice in part down to the use of studded snowshoes by refuse crews.

The snowshoes, which cost nearly �15 a pair and fit over existing shoes, were among a raft of new measures introduced by the council after harsh criticism following heavy snowfall a year ago.

Among the other innovations were refuse collection crews re-visiting roads the following day that had not been accessible on the scheduled collection day. To enable that to happen, they put down salt and grit on their first attempted visit to allow access for refuse vehicles the next day.

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From December 21, there were additional collections due to the suspension of the collection of recycling boxes, meaning crews could be deployed to help with the collection of green and black wheelie bins.

And a collect-all policy was introduced, where the contents of both green and black wheelie bins were collected between December 24 and January 5 and the contents sent to landfill.

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In addition, street cleansing and redeployed recycling collection crew helped Herts Highways to grit key footpaths and hand-operated grit spreaders were put into operation.

Cllr Melvyn Teare, the council’s portfolio holder for environment and sustainability, said that the new plan to deal with the impact of snow and ice had been introduced after the severe weather of December 2009.

He went on: “Although the period of severe weather in December 2010 was not as sustained as the previous year, the new measures have helped ensure that the collection schedule for wheeled bins was maintained, key pathways in the district were cleared and the Christmas market ran as scheduled.

“I would like to thank the waste collection and street cleaning crews and the markets team and traders for helping to keep services operating during this recent bout of snow.”

n Compliments have poured into Hertsmere Council about the hard work of crews over Christmas and during the bad weather in Radlett, Shenley and elsewhere in the borough.

Crews were out every day as planned and comments included “can’t fault the service”, “thank you for your dedicated effort” and “I was gobsmacked to see your refuse collectors in my road today and only one hour late in this terrible weather.”

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