DPW Answers Questions on Trash Collection Delays, Releases FAQ Document

DPW Press Release

Baltimore City Department of Public Works (DPW) Acting Director Matthew W. Garbark today issued an update on the Department’s efforts to resolve trash collection delays, and released a detailed document answering residents’ questions about DPW’s Solid Waste services and operations.

“I am aware that trash in certain areas of the City remains uncollected, despite our best efforts to collect trash as normally scheduled. The majority of communities have either had their trash collected on-time or the day after,” said Acting Director Garbark.

However, some trash remains uncollected more than a day after it was scheduled to be collected, primarily impacting the City’s eastside neighborhoods. “This is unacceptable, and I assure residents that we are working quickly and diligently to resolve the issues,” Mr. Garbark said.

DPW managers and supervisors are driving throughout the City to scout areas where trash collections have been missed. In addition, DPW is using 311 service requests for missed collections to graphically map locations to have a better idea where trash collection has been missed. Residents are urged to continue to call 311.

The Department has contacted private vendors to assess the possibilities of contracting them for collection assistance. In addition, DPW leveraged volunteer employees from other City agencies to assist, and is continuing to aggressively recruit laborers and individuals with Commercial Drivers Licenses (CDL).

Several factors have contributed to the delay in trash collections:

  • An outbreak of COVID-19 at DPW’s Eastside Sanitation Yard forced the unprecedented closure and self-isolation of all eastside routine services crews.
  • Many of the neighborhoods on the City’s eastside have narrow alleys that require skilled drivers to safely navigate. This has slowed down the work of the crews redeployed from DPW’s Westside Sanitation Yard.
  • Since the citywide suspension of recycling, more recyclables have been included in the trash. Trash collection tonnage has increased 22 percent since the City issued its shelter in place order nearly three months ago. This adds to route times as crews have more to collect and to transport to the disposal location.

Click here to view the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document, which is also attached to this press release.

Trash collection delays

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Jennifer Combs
Kurt Kocher
After hours, weekends, or holidays please call 410-396-3100 for the duty officer

The Baltimore City Department of Public Works supports the health, environment, and economy of our City and region by cleaning our neighborhoods and waterways and providing its customers with safe drinking water and sustainable energy practices.