‘We’re working really hard:’ City of Lubbock asking for patience as rain causes delays in trash service

Published: Jun. 5, 2023 at 10:56 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - Recent rainfall is making it harder for the City of Lubbock’s Solid Waste Department to do its job. It is asking citizens for patience, while mud slows down drivers in alleys, and saturation stops activity at the landfill.

What looked like one of the more promising alleyways quickly turned into a problem for one Solid Waste employee Monday afternoon. She says it was her third time to get stuck in the last two weeks.

This driver is new to the job, but Director Brenda Haney says it is happening to everyone.

“It’s a muddy mess right now, and this alley is a perfect example. When you look at this alley it doesn’t look like it’s that bad, but then all of a sudden you hit a really wet spot, a soft spot, and we get trucks stuck. So, we get trucks stuck all over town,” Haney said.

As the garbage truck driver waited to get towed, her schedule was pushed back about an hour and a half. Haney says it has rained a lot in the last two weeks in Abernathy, where the landfill is. So, even if alleys are paved, people could still be seeing delays.

“We’ve had days when the landfill has taken like four hours for trucks waiting in line to try to get in and out, and that’s one load. I mean my trucks normally take and make three to five loads a day. So, if it’s taken four hours just to do one, we’re just not going to be that productive for the day,” she said.

In addition, both trucks and the landfill have to stop if it is lightening.

“When you have day after day of this repeated, it’s just really hard,” Haney said.

Haney says the department has a list of people who have called saying they have not been serviced. It is prioritizing people who called last week before servicing others twice this week.

“We are aware of this and we just really hope that people understand that we’re working really hard to try and make sure that we’ve got them serviced,” Haney said. “We’re also trying to keep these very expensive assets of theirs safe, and the operator inside them safe and keep everybody at the landfill safe, as well.”

Instead of placing it near garbage bins if they are full, drop off excess trash at one of the four Solid Waste drop-off locations:

Haney says they will place some extra bins out until they can catch back up.