COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Shawna McGreevy’s lived in her Bexley-area home for 20 years. But for the first time in March, noticed her yard waste and recycling weren’t being picked up every other Monday as scheduled.
“I noticed it with the yard waste first. They would miss the yard waste and I would call the City of Columbus, the 311 line,” said McGreevy.
Each time, McGreevy said she was told that the city’s yard waste contractor, Rumpke Waste Management, would be out to pick it up. But that didn’t happen.
“I would call back again. In one two-week span, I called four times.”
And the yard waste and recycling continued to pile up. The longest it sat, McGreevy said, was for more than five weeks, from the end of March, until she spoke with Better Call 4 on May 5, when an unscheduled pickup happened.
“They’re not just missing me, and that’s what I keep telling the city’s 311 line,” said McGreevy. “It’s not just me, it’s our entire street.”
And apparently, in other neighborhoods around Columbus. Another woman sent a video from her doorbell camera to Better Call 4. She said a Rumpke truck drove by her home near Smoky Row Road on the northwest side, and didn’t stop to collect the waste at the end of her driveway.
“You have it sitting out there, and if they don’t pick it up, it gets rained on, it blows all over the neighborhood,” said McGreevy.
And McGreevy said storing it inside isn’t an option with these long wait-times.
“It builds up in your house. I can only store so much yard waste and so much recycling in my garage until the day. So, I need them to really honor their contract. That’s what I need.”
Better Call 4 reached out to the City of Columbus about the service delays. In a statement, the Department of Public Service said,
“The City of Columbus recycling and yard waste service contractor Rumpke is working diligently to clear the residential yard waste backlog. Spring and fall are peak seasons for yard waste volume, and Rumpke continues efforts to hire more workers and extend collection service hours. Crews are working into the evenings and on weekends to clear the backlog and be caught up soon. Residents should continue to set out yard waste on their regular collection day. We appreciate everyone’s patience.”
Better Call 4 also reached out to Rumpke, who responded with a statement that said:
Rumpke employees are working diligently to keep Central Ohio communities clean and green. With extra yard waste, spring cleaning and more people continuing to work from home, the amount of residential waste being placed curbside remains at record highs in some areas, meaning collection takes longer and requires more team members. In response, Rumpke teams are working extra hours and Rumpke is bringing in assistance from other service areas.
Rumpke is proud of our dedicated team members who are working long hours and doing their very best to maintain the exceptional service our customers expect and deserve.
Unfortunately, despite our best efforts, collection times and dates continue to vary in some areas. Rumpke apologizes for the inconvenience and greatly appreciates its customers and their patience.
We ask that customers please continue to keep their items curbside the night before their scheduled collect and leave them there. Although collection may be delayed, we are making every effort to service every stop. If collection is not possible, we are providing updates to those customers when possible.
What Rumpke is Doing:
Rumpke continues to invest in its current employees and in growing its staff.Rumpke is an equal opportunity employer. Ages 19 and up with a clean driving record may apply. No experience necessary.Rumpke is excited to offer a CDL driver trainee program with all costs associated with obtaining a CDL license paid.Rumpke is also offering a hefty sign-on bonus for CDL drivers and driver trainees that complete the CDL program.Rumpke offers great pay, as well as comprehensive healthcare and retirement programs.Those interested in working for Rumpke can apply at www.rumpke.com/careers, or visit our offices located at 1191 Fields Ave, Columbus, OH 43201. How
Residents Can Assist:
• Continuing to place trash, recycling and yard waste out the night before their regularly scheduled collection day. We will service homes as soon as we can.
• Break down cardboard boxes.
• Make sure trash containers or bags do not exceed the 50 lb. limit.
• Place material in a highly visible location.
• Put loose yard waste in biodegradable bags or rigid containers.
• Tie branches into bundles less than 4 ft. long and 2 ft. wide.
• Do not dispose of any hazardous material such as batteries, paint, propane or helium tanks in your trash or recycling. Visit the local solid waste district to find out how to properly dispose of hazardous material.
Some additional tips during the upcoming summer season – consider donating old clothing, furniture and toys instead of throwing these items away, make use of community disposal days for large items and recycle only acceptable items. For a complete list of recyclable items, please visit www.rumpke.com, or check the decal on your Rumpke Recycling container.