Bin collection missed? Blame the town centre parking crisis

Crazy parking and lack of spaces in towns mean commercial bins go unemptied

A crisis in town centre parking for workers means that commercial bins are going unemptied, it’s been reported.

Britain’s fastest growing commercial waste-handling business says that bin operators are often unable to complete their collection rounds due to huge numbers of badly-parked cars in town centres.

The York-based company isn’t pointing the finger at any particular town or city, but says that there are so few affordable parking spaces for employees that they are now leaving their vehicles in access roads as well as loading and delivery bays, meaning that access to bins is often compromised.

“It might sound like a trivial complaint, but we genuinely can’t get to bins because of barriers of cars,” says Business Waste spokesperson Mark Hall, “And because we can’t empty them, rubbish piles up very quickly in commercial and retail operations, and that brings with it the problem of vermin.”

And it’s all down to one thing: A lack of parking for town centre workers.

“Whether it’s shop employees, or office staff, those who bring their car to work are finding fewer and fewer places to park,” Hall says. says this is because hard-pressed local authorities now have fewer street parking spaces as they try to maximise parking revenue.

“It’s not something that councils will readily admit to, but it’s happening. Parking for a full day has become prohibitively expensive for people who work in town centres,” says Hall.

The end result is access roads, loading bays and company parking areas packed to the gills, with little or no access for the bin lorry come collection day.

Here’s what town centre workers had to say:

Christine, Derby: “I used to park on a back road until they painted yellow lines. Now the manager lets a few of us park around the back, but you have to fight for every space, and there was a big shouting match when the bin lorry couldn’t get in.”

Sue, Oxford: “Oxford’s awful to park, so you grab any space you can. Tough about the bin lorries, but me getting to work on time comes first.”

And bin lorry operators had their say too:

Piotr, London: “It gets worse every day. I reckon about one in ten commercial collections are getting missed now because of cars in the way.”

Ian, Cardiff: “We get into arguments with company bosses all the time. It’s not our fault people stick their cars in front of the bins. We’re not Harry Potter with a magic wand, you know!”

Hall says that this conflict makes life difficult for both waste collection company and client, as disputes over whose fault it is that rubbish hasn’t been collected are time-consuming for all parties involved, and cause friction in the workplace.

“We pride ourselves with our friendly relationship with our many clients, from the very biggest companies to simple lock-up shops, and this is the kind of problem we can all do without,” he says. ‘s Mark Hall encourages companies and organisations to be aware of refuse collection times so that there’s a clear path to bins and skips.

And, as a spokesperson for a company that prides itself on its green policies, he also asks that companies encourage their workers to take public transport whenever possible.

“Obviously, public transport isn’t the solution for everybody,” he says, “But with fewer cars on the road, it makes things easier for service vehicles to go about their vital work without a hitch.”

“We’d rather be out there doing what we do best – collecting your commercial refuse and taking it to be recycled.”