WTSP.com talked to a handful of residents that were unhappy that waste and recycling collection services are occurring too early and waking them up.
Hillsborough County permits pickup as early as 3 A.M. Although close to residential areas it isn’t allowed until 6 A.M. Waste Management was performing its pickups between 4 A.M. to 6 A.M. When asked about the service, Waste Management was quick to admit the error and will ensure it doesn’t happen in the future.
Complaints about early morning service have happened before. In fact, a Georgia sanitation worker, Kevin McGill, was briefly jailed in 2015 for picking up trash too early. The sentence was later reversed.
“Commercial collection can be very loud,” Director Kimberly Byer. “There’s backup alarms, there is banging of dumpsters and we want to avoid that in the residential areas.”
The county confirms commercial trash pick-up is allowed as early as 3 a.m. but not if the dumpster is within 500 feet of a home. Collection close to residential areas like Kerri’s isn't allowed until 6 a.m.
“We knew right away it was a violation of the contract and of county ordinances,” said Byer. "We called and got a little more information on the collection of that unit and Waste Management said 'Yeah, that did happen and we’ll address that.'”
Byer promised the pre-dawn pick-ups would not continue, saying future violations could result in a fine.
“I think it was an overzealous driver really trying to get his route done early, beat traffic," Byer said. "And that does happen sometimes and when it's brought to our attention we do address it.”