THE LEADER of Harlow Council has slammed the operators of the new bin collection contract after a disastrous first week that has seen a large number of bin collections not completed.
Back in September, Harlow Council announced that Veoila had secured the new contract. At the time, Harlow Council told residents. “Harlow Council has procured a new contract for household bin collections and is very pleased with the results. The new contract will come into effect with no disruption to residents and will offer improvements too”.
But now, council boss Mark Ingall has had to lay down the law and has indicated that the council may take legal action. He said: “Throughout last week Harlow Council staff have been repeatedly in contact with Veolia to establish how they intend to put right the problem of delayed waste collections.
Although only a minority of residents have been affected, even one missed collection is one too many. Yesterday I telephoned a Veolia contact six times to get an update, before I eventually managed to speak to somebody. For long periods of the day calls to the contact number I have were not answered and Veolia’s customer care telephone number was engaged.”
“Harlow Council are taking legal advice about how we can seek compensation for Veolia’s failure, in the meantime we call on the company to make a full apology to those residents affected and put their considerable resources fully behind efforts to put the situation right.”
YH contacted Veoila. A spokesperson said: “We are aware that some residents experienced a delay in the collection of their waste or recycling. This is the result of some contractual changes made in order to provide a more efficient service to residents and the community. Veolia is deploying additional resource to address the immediate issue.
This, along with the significant investment already made in new vehicles and digital improvements, means we are confident that residents will soon see a return to an excellent service that we have been providing for 17 years.”
Harlow Council has also provided an update regarding waste collections.
A spokesperson said: “Due to last week’s technical problems there continues to be some delays to the waste and recycling collections carried out by Veolia. We are sorry to residents who are experiencing delays and disruption.
“It is mainly food waste and communal waste collections disrupted and Veolia have put in extra resources to catch up with these collections. Residents are advised that collections are likely to continue to be disrupted while work takes place to catch up with collections.
“We have made it clear to Veolia that it is unacceptable that our residents’ bins are not being emptied when promised and it is unacceptable that these delays are continuing. We continue to work with Veolia to ensure that collections are caught up with as soon as possible, and that scheduled collections get back to normal. We expect to see the situation improve shortly.
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