Richmond trash day could see changes in new city plan

By Rachel DePompa - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Richmond is cleaning up how it picks up your trash. The Department of Public Works is about to roll out a new plan that could change trash pick-up schedules and save the city millions of dollars.

Richmonder's throw away 84,000 tons of trash each year and soon, some neighborhoods in the city will no longer see people picking up their garbage. That's because trash pick-up in the river city is about to go high-tech.

"We're buying 25 yard hack-em, pack-em trucks which means you can get more garbage on these trucks," said Dexter White, Department of Public Works Director.

The current trucks only hold about 20 cubic yards of trash and sometimes require a crew of up to 3 people. Henrico's been using automated trucks for almost three years. We followed one around this morning and it's clear they make the job faster.

"It holds a little bit more than the average truck. When the trash is real wet it holds probably 10 maybe 13 tons. When it's dry, it hold about 10 to 11 tons," said Bobby Ragsdale, Henrico Public Utilities.

The trucks just won't hold more trash; they'll have to make fewer trips to the transfer station.
The city also plans to cut back routes and no longer collect garbage on Fridays.

It's important to note these changes won't happen until January or February and are expected to save the city 2.5 million dollars. The trucks won't fit in every city neighborhood, so the Fan or Museum District probably won't see automated service. Those who do get the new trucks will also have to more be careful where they put their garbage cans.

"If they get automated services they definitely need to put their container away from the mail box or away from a parked car, things of that nature, so that the automated arm would have access to the super-can," said White.

So, how do you know what changes are happening to trash collection in your particular neighborhood? Look for informational flyers to be placed on your front door and the city will put stickers put on the outside of your trash cans.

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