Will my recycling and rubbish collections be affected?
We are doing everything we can to keep waste collections running as normal, however, during this period, the service may be impacted by staff shortages due to sickness.
As there are more people at home, there is an increase in the amount of waste being collected in the district. In addition, the need for social distancing, more parked cars and staff absence due to sickness means some waste collection services may take longer to be collected and there may be delays.
If there are staff shortages due to sickness increase, we may temporarily suspend the service.
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Thank you to the majority of residents who are doing everything they can to dispose of their waste properly. To minimise delays, follow this guidance:
- Don’t park your car so it blocks the access to the road. Our collection vehicles and emergency vehicles need to easily access your road.
- Put your bin out by 6am and leave it out till it’s been emptied.
- Put it at the edge of your property, not on the pavement or in the road.
- Put food waste in your green food caddy, do not put it in your rubbish bin.
- Compact your recycling as much as possible to maximise space.
- Excess rubbish on top of or down by the side of your black wheeled rubbish bin will not be collected.
- Bin crews are working hard to keep this essential service going during this difficult time. If you see them, please let them know you appreciate what they’re doing and give them a wave or a smile but please maintain a distance of at least two metres.
Recycle right and reduce your waste
- Put the right items in the right bins. Use the Surrey Recycles search tool to find out what goes where.
- Reduce your waste as much as possible. Could you use an alternative reusable item, or use something again instead of throwing it away? Read these tips on how to reduce the amount of waste.
- Don’t buy more food than you need and remember to freeze it if you can’t eat it before the use by date. Use up leftovers rather than throwing them away. Check the recipe page for ideas.
- Start composting at home. Buy a compost bin at a reduced rate or for those wanting to compost all their food waste, food waste digesters are also available.
What do I do with my waste if I’m self-isolating?
The government has advised anyone who is self-isolating with symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19), including those with a diagnosis of the virus, should treat their household waste as follows:
- Personal waste – eg. used tissues and disposable cleaning cloths can be stored securely within disposable rubbish bags. These bags should be placed into another bag, tied securely and kept separate from other waste within your own room. This should be put aside for at least 72 hours before being put in your usual external household waste bin.
- Other household waste can be disposed of as normal.
The advice also says when cleaning you should use your usual household products, like detergents and bleach, as these will be very effective at getting rid of the virus on surfaces. Clean frequently touched surfaces.
For more information, read the government’s stay at home guidance for people with confirmed or possible coronavirus (COVID-19) infection.
Community Recycling Centres
From Monday 11 May, there is a phased reopening of some of Surrey’s community recycling centres. These centres will only accept black bagged rubbish or garden waste.
The CRC’s in Caterham on the Hill and in Warlingham will not reopen because it isn’t possible to open these sites safely and ensure social distancing between visitors and staff. In addition, due to the size and location of both CRC’s long queues could form on surrounding roads.
The Earlswood CRC in Redhill is the nearest centre you can visit and it will reopen on Monday 11 May. It will be open every day and at the weekend from 9am to 6pm. Please follow these steps to successfully dispose of your waste at the centre:
- Only visit a CRC if you absolutely need to. Visit www.surreycc.gov.uk/recycling before you leave to see if there are any service updates.
- One person should drive to the centre because only one person can get out of the car once they’re inside the CRC.
- Only bring black bag waste and/or garden waste. These items are the most popular and they can be disposed of safely and quickly.
- Please be patient. We expect there will be traffic queues at the CRC.
- Arrive by car. Pedestrians, vans, pick ups or trailers won't be allowed into the CRC.
- If you can’t carry it, don’t bring it. CRC staff can’t help you unload your waste.
Please store all other items you would normally take to a CRC at home until they can accept a wider range of materials, please don’t put them in your bins or have bonfires.
You may like to consider giving unwanted clothes, shoes and household goods to charity when they re-open. Do not leave anything outside closed charity shops as this is also flytipping.
Can I have a bonfire to dispose of my waste?
Residents across the district are being asked to think of others and to not light bonfires to dispose of their waste. Bonfires create smoke, cause air pollution and prevent people from being in their gardens and can have a bigger impact at this time.
Coronavirus is known to cause serious respiratory problems, which could be made much worse if the sufferer is exposed to smoke from bonfires.
Bonfires can also become out of control or cause accidents, creating extra pressure on the already busy emergency services.
We understand the closure of our community recycling centres may create a storage issue for some residents. Please think of others, compost your garden waste where possible, and store your rubbish for disposal when the current emergency is over, rather than burn it.
I'm having a spring clean, what do I do with my additional rubbish?
If you decide to have a spring clean while you’re at home, don’t put everything in the bin straight away, please wait until normal service resumes. To ensure your rubbish and recycling is collected, please don’t put items in your bins, which should be taken to a community recycling centre.
You may like to consider giving unwanted clothes, shoes and household goods to charity when they re-open. Do not leave anything outside closed charity shops as this is fly tipping, which is illegal dumping and a crime.
We appreciate options for disposing of your waste are reduced now, but please don’t be tempted to dispose of your waste elsewhere in the district, this is flytipping.
Flytipping is against the law and those convicted face fines of up to £50,000 or up to five years’ imprisonment, as well as other potential penalties.
Some flytips are from commercial waste collected outside of the district and dumped here because it is cheaper than taking it to a commercial waste depot, or waste is flytipped because the waste carriers aren’t registered and don’t have a licence. Some incidents of flytips being reported in the district has nothing to do with the current national lockdown.
These are ways you can help us stop flytipping in the district:
- If you come across a flytip, please report it or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
- If you’re concerned a company isn’t disposing of waste correctly, call the Environment Agency on 0800 80 70 60 or report it to Crimestoppers.
- Don’t give your waste to anyone not registered. If it is later found flytipped you will have committed an offence and face a fine.
Bulky rubbish clearance weekend 16 May cancelled
To ensure we follow the current social distancing guidance and to minimise any risk to our staff and residents, we have cancelled the bulky rubbish clearance weekend due to take place on 16 May.
Our bulky waste collection service
Our bulky waste collection service can take your large items which cannot be reused or recycled. We can’t collect bagged rubbish which can be put in your household’s rubbish collection.
For a subsidised rate of £33.20, residents can have up to three large or bulky household items, such as washing machines, fridges, freezers, mattresses, beds and sofas, collected from outside their homes. The service is free for those on certain means-tested benefits. Some restrictions apply:
- Items must be at the edge of the property for collection. They cannot be collected from sheds, garages or from inside the home.
- The service is limited to two collections a household each year and is for disposal of items you would take with you when moving home.
- It does not dispose of items such as carpets, concrete, double glazed windows, fencing, kitchen units or water and oil tanks.
Call Biffa on 01883 712333, Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm, to arrange a collection or for more information.
How do I keep up to date with all these changes?
To be kept up to date on our recycling and rubbish collection service, sign up to receive our recycling and rubbish e-newsletter.
If you need to contact us about your bin collections, please use our online links if you can to free up the phone lines for people without access to the internet.