Delays to bin collections across B&NES blamed on national driver shortage

Residents are being thanked and an apology has been issued following delays to bin collections across the area caused by a shortage of drivers and the effects of the pandemic.

Image © B&NES Council

Recycling collection routes are currently being prioritised and Bath & North East Somerset Council has drafted in extra loaders to help improve collections in the coming weeks.

A recruitment campaign for qualified LGV drivers has been launched and qualified LGV drivers are urged to consider driver/loader vacancies in Keynsham.

Loader roles could also lead to the opportunity to train to become an LGV driver so anyone looking to begin a driving career is being encouraged to apply.

Earlier this month, the Road Haulage Association said that the HGV driver shortage was of “catastrophic proportions”.

Covid-19 delays to training and testing, and EU drivers leaving the UK have worsened long-term driver shortage, which is an issue affecting many other local authorities across the country.

The problem has been compounded by continued heavy volumes of waste and recycling.

Councillor David Wood, cabinet member for Neighbourhood Services, said: “I am frustrated that due to this major national issue, some residents have not received the level of service we want to provide.

“We are sorry for the inconvenience this is causing and we would like to reassure people that we are doing our utmost to recruit new staff as soon as we can.

“If we have not picked up your road’s kerbside collection on the day we should have, please leave it out until the next day and we will return for it. Please check service updates for your neighbourhood on our website and keep an eye on our social media channels.

“Please bear with us a little longer while we work to resolve the challenging issues we are facing and get our service back on track. Thank you for your patience.”

Any waste collection disruptions are updated on the website which can be viewed here.

The local authority has said that crews will be working later than normal so usual collection times may alter.

If your road does not appear on the service disruption page, you can report a missed bin collection at https://beta.bathnes.gov.uk/report-missed-bin-collection.

Bath Echo