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Bin collections during bad weather

To limit disruption to your bin collections, our crews use 2 gritting vehicles that are not part of the gritting network to assist with access to difficult to reach areas on the collection route. These vehicles are in full force during snow and ice conditions.

We'll always do our best to collect your waste. During severe weather conditions, it will sometimes take us longer than usual.

Are there any changes to my bin collection?

There are a couple of ways you can stay up-to-date with bin collection changes:

Why was my brown bin only half emptied?

When the weather is particularly cold, any moisture created by garden and food waste may freeze in the cold weather. This results in some waste getting stuck to the bottom of the bin.

It's not always easy for us to see that waste is stuck to the bin and as we're unable to spend time unfreezing the waste, please bring your bin back in and we'll empty it on your next scheduled collection day.

What should I do if my bin hasn't been collected due to severe weather?

If your bin wasn't collected due to severe weather conditions, such as snow and ice:

  • Please leave your bin out if it's safe to do so and we'll return to collect it as soon as we can.
  • You don't need to report a missed bin collection unless your bin is the only bin not collected on your street. How to report a missed bin
  • If you can, please assist neighbours who may be less able to move their bin in bad weather.
  • If we've not been able to collect your rubbish or recycling, you can bag your extra waste and put it out next to your dark green bin. Additional recycling items should be left next to the relevant bin in a container which allows us to easily view the contents and empty them.
  • In severe windy weather it may help to put bins in a sheltered spot, close to your usual location, as bins can easily get blown around. Please make sure we're still able to clearly see your bins.

My road is clear, why haven't you collected my bin?

While road conditions where you live may be clear, it may still be unsafe in other locations. We must consider conditions on the whole collection route when making a decision on whether to collect bins.

Our bin lorry depot is based in Heywood and we must be able to drive the lorries safely from the depot to your street and then to the waste and recycling centres.

Why do you stop collecting bins in bad weather?

There are a number of reasons why we may make the decision to delay bin collections. We never make these decisions lightly and the decision is usually based on a number of reasons including:

  • An increase in parked cars on streets during bad weather can stop the bin lorries getting into or out of streets safely.
  • There could be more rubbish and recycling for us to collect because we haven't been able to collect due to the severe weather conditions. This means it could take us significantly longer to collect all the waste. We'll do our very best to empty your bins with the resources we have and aim to get your collection service back to normal as quickly as possible.
  • We must ensure it's safe for our collection crew to collect your bins. We have a duty of care for everyone we employ.
  • Our bin lorries are large and extremely heavy vehicles. On an icy road, they could pose a risk to other vehicles as well as our bin crews if conditions become severe.
  • If a bin lorry gets stuck, it can require considerable time, effort and cost to recover it. Due to the size and weight of the lorries, it requires specialist equipment to get them back on the road. The collections for the rest of the day are then disrupted and this could also cause further delays to traffic while the lorry is being recovered.
  • In severe fog, it can be dangerous for us to operate the bin lorries because we're not able to see well. It's unsafe for staff to empty bins behind the lorry when the driver can't see where they are. It's also hazardous for us to drive heavy vehicles, such as our bin lorries, when visibility is severely reduced.

How can I help with bin collections in severe weather?

If the weather is bad, you may want to do some of the following to help us collect your bin.

  • Please park your car in a way that doesn't cause further access problems for our bin lorries. For example, try to park on your drive, if you have one, and avoid parking on both sides of narrow roads or near a corner.
  • When conditions improve, you can consider taking your rubbish and recycling to your nearest waste and recycling centre (tip).
  • Show community spirit where possible and organise snow shovelling exercises along your road. This should help us to get to your bins to empty them.


​0300 303 8884

Phone: Monday–Friday 8.30am–5.30pm.
Closed for training Monday 11am–11.30am.

Environmental Management
Green Lane
Heywood OL10 2DY
(Postal address only)

Green Flag Award.

North West In Bloom.

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