Bin fiasco will not cost council a bean

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Wakefield Council has not picked up the bill for the ‘fiasco’ around changes to bin collections.

Changes were due to begin on March 16 with household rubbish being taken to the district’s new £750m waste plant, operated by Shanks Waste Management.

But sub-zero temperatures in Canada caused the River Hudson to freeze over leaving vital pieces of kit for the new South Kirkby waste plant stuck on a ship.

The freezing weather meant that the council could not introduce the new recycling scheme and had to send out extra letters to people informing of why there would be delays.

Coun Angela Taylor asked Coun Maureen Cummings, the council’s cabinet member at a full council meeting, on Wednesday: “No doubt the whole fiasco will be blamed on Shanks and I hope they are going to take full responsibility financially for it and for all the extra letters that have been sent and all the next ones that will have to be sent out.

“Do you not think the whole situation could have been avoided if Shanks realised that rivers in North America froze over at this time of year and Wakefield Council made sure that everything is up and running and tested before starting the scheme?”

Coun Cummings replied: “We can never determine what’s going to happen but you are quite right the rivers do get pretty icy at this time of year.

“I can assure you that Shanks have paid for the fiasco up to date at no cost to this council.

“We will continue until June hopefully when we will be able to do it again.”

She added people should continue with their normal bin collection routines.

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