Reminder: City will pick up Christmas trees

Beginning today through the month of January, the City of Seattle will pick up and compost your Christmas trees and wreaths for no additional charge. Just place them on the curb on your usual yard waste collection day.

Don’t forget to remove all decorations, chop the tree into 4-feet lengths (or shorter) and bundle each section with sisal string or twine (not plastic.) Any flocked or plastic trees or wreaths will be charged as extra garbage. All the details are here.

If you’d rather haul the tree to a transfer station, your drop-off will be free until Jan. 31st.

Normal garbage pick-up for Labor Day

Seattle Public Utilities will pick up garbage, yard waste and recycling like normal on Monday, despite the Labor Day holiday. If Monday is your regular pickup day, put your containers out by 7 a.m. as usual.

The City of Seattle’s North & South Recycling and Disposal stations also will be open during their regular business hours of 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. The North Recycling and Disposal Station is at 1350 N. 34th St. in Wallingford/Fremont.

Customers can report a missed collection after 6 p.m. on the day it was missed by calling (206) 684-3000 or filling out the online Missed Collection form.

Wide garbage truck blamed for totaled garage

Derek posted this message and photo in the forum:

The new garbage trucks are so wide they barely fit down the alley. Yesterday, they TOTALED my neighbors garage, it is six feet off its foundation now!


Derek says it happened yesterday in an alley off Earl Ave. in Loyal Heights. We brought the incident to the attention of Seattle Public Utilities spokesperson Cornell Amaya, who said he has not heard of any issues with the new garbage trucks being too wide for some alleys.

Update: Now KING 5 has done the story, and Waste Management says they’re meeting with the homeowner and will make sure he’s properly compensated.

Garbage and recycling changes start today

Don’t forget that all the new recycling and yard waste changes start today, and that your collection day may have changed. You should have received a notice in the mail with your collection day listed on the label, and the garbage collectors should have placed a collection day sticker on your garbage can. You can also check online here.

Yard waste will now be picked up every week, and you can put food scraps such as meat, fish, bones, shells, cheese and dairy products into your yard waste carts. You also can recycle a ton more stuff than before, including paper and plastic cups, deli trays, aluminum foil, plastic plant pots and lids that are at least three inches in diameter. And you can put glass right into the main recycling cart instead of separating it. For more information, click here.

Get ready for a new garbage day

In an effort to divert 60 percent of waste to recycling or composting by 2012, the city is making changes to garbage collection. Starting next week, the city will be taping notices to your garbage can outlining the changes that begin on March 30th. One of the big changes will be your garbage day. The city says that most Seattle residents will be getting a new collection day. Other changes:

  • All food scraps, including meat, fish, bones, shells and dairy products, can go in the food and yard waste cart.
  • More food/yard waste cart sizes to choose from, including 13-, 32- and 96-gallon options.
  • Weekly food and yard waste collection for all single-family households. Organics were previously collected every other week.
  • Electronics, used motor oil and bulky items can be collected through special services.
  • Glass bottles and jars go in the recycling cart – no more separating!
  • More paper, plastic and metal items can be recycled, including cups, deli trays, aluminum foil and plastic plant pots.

As we wrote earlier this month, residents can already start to combine glass recycling in with other recyclables.

Unofficial start to combined recycling

Several My Ballard readers said they’ve noticed recycling crews putting both glass and other recyclables into the same compartment on their trucks. We spoke with our own neighborhood driver who confirmed they’ve started mixing recyclables, so we checked with Seattle Public Utilities for the official word. A Seattle Public Utilities representative said “it would be a good idea to separate it up until March 30th,” although he said you won’t be penalized for throwing it all into the same can. Many households will also get a new collection day. You should receive a notice in the mail by March 23rd.

Details on garbage, tree recycling, yard waste

The city today released this schedule to help clear up remaining confusion about garbage, recycling and yard waste collection:

See it full-screen here (pdf). Yard waste pickup resumes next week, and collectors will pick up extra amounts for free through the 16th. Meanwhile, you can recycle your Christmas tree now through January 11th as long as you follow the requirements on cutting it down to size. And finally, if the wind blew away your garbage can, here’s how to get a replacement. More info than you ever thought you’d need to know on SPU’s website, or you can call 684-3000.

Wind blows trash cans, knocks out power

First the snow was too deep for garbage trucks, now the wind is blowing trash and garbage cans all over the place.

We had to run around the neighborhood looking for our glass recycling bin (which is still missing), while a neighbor looked for his lid. Thankfully our garbage had already been picked up. We received this email from Steve:

There is a LOT of trash blown all over the streets and yards everywhere I drove in Ballard and Greenwood and Phinney today. The city is not going to clean it up so it’s up to all of us to take care of the stuff we can see around our homes and streets.

Update: About 1,500 customers in Crown Hill and Blue Ridge lost power for a couple hours this afternoon due to the high winds.

Garbage, recycling pickup… finally

After missing last week, Seattle garbage collectors will be making their regularly-scheduled rounds in many Ballard neighborhoods today (Monday).

A recording on PUD’s line (684-3000) says contractors will focus on garbage and recycling pickup over yard waste. Driving around Ballard, though, we see most people putting everything on the curb, just in case. “Customers whose collections have been delayed by a week can set out double their normal amount of garbage at no additional charge,” explains Seattle Public Utilities. “When setting out extra waste, customers are encouraged to place perishable food items in their collection containers and set bagged non-perishable items next to the containers.” (Thanks Chud for the clarification!)

Trash and yard waste pickup delayed again

The City of Seattle has just put out a press release explaining that garbage and yard waste pickup has been postponed again “due to dangerous road conditions.” Collectors will attempt another go at it tomorrow. “Customers missed today should leave their containers out tomorrow,” explains Seattle Public Utilities. “If materials are not collected tomorrow, then customers should bring in their containers until next week.” More info here.