Recycle for Dorset Service Policy (Last updated January 2017)
Details of the service policies of the new uniform recycling and residual waste service for Dorset, Recycle for Dorset, that will be provided by the Dorset Waste Partnership (DWP) on behalf of its partner authorities.
This service policy fully supports the aims and objectives of the Dorset Waste Partnership, as set out in its Business Plan and the Joint Municipal Waste Management Strategy for Dorset. They are:
- reduction in waste collected and landfilled
- improvement in customer satisfaction rates and
- achievement of a minimum of £1.3m per annum efficiencies and savings
The policy has been kept under review and this is the second version of the policy following the introduction of the Recycle for Dorset for the Tranche One area. The policy will continue to be kept under review as implementation continues.
1. Containers, frequency and materials
Day of collection
The DWP will aim to make all collections, apart from garden waste, on the same day of the week in each area, with recycling and food collected one week and residual waste and food collected on the alternate week. There may be occasions where residual collections will have to take place on a different weekday to recycling, however these will be regarded as exceptions to the normal service, where there are local operational difficulties.
The standard service for recycling at each property will be a fortnightly collection using a grey 240-litre wheeled bin with a green lid for mixed recycling and green kerbside recycling box for glass. Batteries will be placed in a small recycling bag, which will be presented in the top of the contents of the recycling box. Material collected for recycling will be:
|240-litre wheeled bin||Kerbside recycling box|
Each household will receive a weekly collection of food waste from a brown lockable 23-litre container (with a 7-litre brown caddy to use in the kitchen). Food waste incorporates all cooked and uncooked food waste including:
- meat, fish and bones
- cakes, bread and pastries
- leftovers, including plate scrapings
- tea bags and coffee grounds
- pasta and rice
- fruit and vegetable peelings
- cheese and dairy produce
Residual waste (or rubbish) is the waste that cannot be recycled or composted as part of the standard service. The standard service for residual waste will be a fortnightly collection using a grey 140-litre wheeled bin with a grey lid. Residual waste is further defined in section 10.
General container policy
The DWP will supply containers as set out in section 1 of this policy. Additional recycling may be presented in other suitable containers comparable in size and capacity to the recycling box, and the DWP will collect such materials. For residual waste, only containers/bins that have been supplied by the DWP will be emptied.
If a resident decides they do not want to participate in the service they may decide not to use the service. However, they would then be required to dispose of their own waste and in a safe and suitable manner.
All wheeled bins and food waste containers must be presented with closed lids. For residual waste, no extra bags, boxes or loose residual waste will be collected.
Where a resident wishes to apply for non-standard arrangements for waste and recycling collections they must make an application to the DWP. Officers will make decisions in line with this policy in the first instance. Appeals against refusal decisions should be made in writing to DWP Appeals. Appeals will be considered by a senior officer of minimum Manager level.
2. Tailoring residual waste capacity
The standard residual waste bin will provide sufficient capacity for the majority of households provided appropriate use is made of the other containers supplied. However, in certain circumstances, some residents may not have sufficient capacity for their residual waste.
Only households conforming to the circumstances detailed in this section can be considered for extra capacity. To be considered for additional capacity, householders must apply to the DWP and may be asked to provide supporting evidence or accept a visit from a DWP officer.
The householder will be required to inform the DWP of any changes in circumstances that mean they no longer meet the requirements of the policy and are no longer entitled to additional capacity. Regular reviews will be conducted to ensure that those who are granted additional capacity still require this and still meet the criteria.
If a new resident moves into a household with a non-standard residual bin, they will be entitled to the standard sized containers.
Identified below are the circumstances where residents can apply for additional residual waste capacity should they meet the criteria.
Families of five or more can apply for a larger bin for residual waste. The DWP will only supply a larger bin for residual waste once satisfied that the household has made every reasonable effort to divert waste through recycling, and that the household requirement for extra capacity is genuine. Extra capacity will be provided as follows:
- Up to four permanent occupants in the household - standard 140-litre residual waste bin
- Five or more permanent occupants in household - 240-litre residual waste bin
With effect from 2017/18 where a household meets the criteria for additional capacity for a large family, an administration and delivery charge will be levied to make this change.
Children in disposable nappies
The DWP encourages the use of modern washable nappies (real nappies) as an alternative to disposables. Real nappies are widely available and the DWP operates an incentive scheme to help with the financial cost of buying real nappies. However, some families with young children who use disposable nappies may have additional residual waste needs. As a result, the DWP will offer families with small children additional residual waste capacity.
Families with one or more children in disposable nappies under three years of age can apply to the DWP for additional residual waste capacity. With effect from 2017/18 only households that are not eligible for additional capacity for a larger family are able to apply for additional sacks for disposable nappies. Additionally, from 2017/18 each application for additional sacks due to disposable nappies will be subject to payment of an administration and delivery charge.
Where applications are approved, the DWP will issue a pack of 26 authorised sacks to the household. This equates to one additional waste sack per residual waste collection. The purpose of the sack is to increase capacity, not act as a receptacle for used nappies. The householder may place other residual waste within the sack and place used nappies within the wheeled bin. The authorised sack may be presented beside the residual waste wheeled bin. Applications for authorised sacks must be made on an annual basis.
The DWP recognises that some residents may have additional waste requirements for medical reasons. Where additional residual waste is generated and the capacity of the standard residual waste bin is not sufficient, householders (or carers on behalf of householders) can apply for additional residual waste capacity. DWP officers may assess each application and work with householders and carers to find an appropriate solution. The DWP will seek to provide householders with additional capacity suitable to the householders needs; this could be additional sacks or bigger containers.
Where additional capacity is no longer required due to a change in circumstances, e.g. a person is admitted to a nursing home, the DWP should be informed.
3. Tailoring recycling capacity
Additional recycling material
There are no restrictions on the quantity of recyclable materials that households can recycle providing they store and present the materials appropriately. If a resident has additional recycling that will not fit in the recycling bin or box, the DWP will collect this provided it is presented in a suitable container comparable in size, capacity and dimensions to your recycling box.
If a resident presents additional recycling, paper and card should be kept dry and stored in the wheeled bin. Tins, cans and plastic bottles can be collected from an extra container or recycling box. Glass bottles and jars must be separated from other recycling materials when presented for collection. Glass must not be put in the wheeled bin, as it will contaminate the other materials. The DWP is unable to collect any large pieces of cardboard. Large cardboard boxes should be broken down and placed loosely in the recycling bin.
If required, householders will be able to purchase additional 'DWP' recycling wheeled bins or boxes from the partnership. We will only empty wheeled bins that are provided by the DWP. We cannot accept any liability for loss or damage to any container the householder provides for storage and collection of recyclables. If a replacement recycling box, lid or food caddy is required, residents will be advised to collect these from a network of local collection points wherever possible.
Smaller recycling wheeled bins
If a new resident moves into a household with a non-standard recycling bin they will be entitled to the standard service at no extra cost.
If a householder requests to change from a smaller recycling bin to a standard sized container, and they originally requested a smaller recycling bin, then an administration and delivery fee will be levied to make this change.
Following implementation, smaller recycling bins will not be available for householders to request.
4. Properties unsuitable for wheeled bins
Some properties may not be suitable for the range of containers being provided as standard. If a property meets one or more of the following criteria, it will be deemed unsuitable for wheeled bins and alternatives will be provided. However, householders may still wish to use the containers supplied even if their property meets one or more of these criteria.
- the property is physically incapable of storing wheeled bins anywhere within its boundary
- there is no alternative but to wheel the bins through the property and no alternative access or storage point
- where the wheeled bin must be brought up or down a series of steps that would present a safety risk or unreasonable difficulty and there is no alternative access or storage point
- where there is no suitable point outside or near to the property to present the wheeled bin for collection
- any other exceptional circumstances as requested by residents and agreed by the DWP
If householders notify the DWP that their property meets one or more of the above criteria DWP officers will assess each application and advise accordingly.
Collection arrangements for properties unsuitable for use of wheeled bins
If a property meets at least one of the criteria above, the DWP may provide the following alternative to the standard wheeled bins:
- authorised sacks for residual waste to be collected every fortnight (table 1 indicates the number of authorised sacks which may be provided);
- 23-litre container and kitchen caddy for food waste to be collected every week; and up to three boxes or bags (or a mixture of both) for recycling to be collected every fortnight. One to be used for glass, the others for paper, plastic bottles, cans and tins, and cardboard. An additional, reusable small bag for batteries.
Table 1 Alternative collection arrangements
|Household Occupancy||Number Authorised Sacks/Containers (1 year supply)|
|Residual waste (grey)||Recycling|
|Up to 4||2 sacks per fortnight||up to 3 boxes / bags|
|5||3 sacks per fortnight||up to 3 boxes / bags|
|6+||4 sacks per fortnight||up to 3 boxes / bags|
The recycling containers in Table 1 are those to be provided by the DWP. There is no restriction on recycling capacity and other suitable containers may be presented.
With effect from 2017/18 where a household meets the criteria for additional capacity for a large family of five or more an administration and delivery charge will be levied on the first application.
Residents will only receive their entitlement of authorised sacks each year and this is the household's annual allowance. The expectation is that residents will split this equally throughout the year and the DWP reserves the right to only collect the authorised number of sacks per property per collection. We will not collect waste contained in non-authorised DWP sacks, boxes or other loose rubbish.
5. Assisted collections
Inevitably there will be people within the community who require an enhanced level of service with the waste management process due to a number of conditions either on a permanent or temporary basis. It is essential that provision is made to assist such people.
The Dorset Waste Partnership therefore offers an enhanced level of service in circumstances where the applicant is genuinely incapacitated either temporarily or permanently or has a physical disability which makes it difficult or impossible to present waste and recycling at the kerbside and either:
- there is no other able-bodied person living in the same property over 14 years of age or
- no family member or neighbour is available to help wheel the bin to the collection point.
As part of these arrangements the applicant will have to:
- agree to a permanent alternative collection point and
- if requested to do so, provide proof of incapacity (doctor's note) and
- allow access to containers for the collection crew from 7am onwards. If your property is in Weymouth, Portland, Chickerell or the surrounding area containers need to be put out no later than 6am on the day of collection.
To carry out an assisted collection the collection crew will have to enter private property and the DWP is not liable for any damage caused, unless operatives can be shown to have acted in an unreasonable manner. DWP collection staff are not authorised to enter the resident's home.
In order to qualify for this service, residents must request a dispensation by calling Dorset Direct. A home visit may be required but the completion of a simple questionnaire would commence the service. The following questions will be asked as part of the questionnaire:
- does the applicant have a permanent physical disability, illness or condition which has been diagnosed by a GP?
- does the applicant have a temporary physical disability, illness or condition which has been diagnosed by a GP?
- does the applicant have difficulty putting waste out due to age?
- are there any able bodied persons living in the property aged over 14 years?
- are there any other members of the family or neighbours who can assist the applicant?
A regular review of all assisted collection applicants will be carried out by the DWP to ensure that support is still needed. Enforcement action will be considered if there is regular and recorded misuse of this system.
In cases where applications for assisted collection are received from residents living in locations which would require the DWP to access long drives or lanes or move containers extended distances it is possible that the DWP will be unable to comply with that request, or an alternative service or location may be offered. In these cases, the final decision on what service can be provided will be made by the Head of Operations.
6. Collection point for emptying wheeled bins and boxes
Where a household is on a private street (which includes standard and narrow access) and council collection vehicles have historically accessed this road, the DWP will endeavour to continue to do so. Where the collection is from a private road then permission will be required from the owner. Both for private streets and for private roads DWP will not accept liability for damage caused to the private road/street surface (including verges) where DWP are acting reasonably.
Where it is not possible to access the private road or street (which includes standard and narrow access) or permission is not received, the normal collection point will be at a suitable position on the nearest publicly maintained road or at another point agreed between the household and the DWP. Where the DWP cannot collect from a
private road or a private street householders will be contacted concerning the revised collection point.
It is the householders' responsibility to ensure, where possible, containers are not placed in such a way that they will cause an obstruction to pedestrians and road users. Containers should not be put out for collection earlier than 6pm on the day before collection, or later than 7am on the day of collection (If your property is in Weymouth, Portland, Chickerell or the surrounding area containers need to be put out no later than 6am on the day of collection). Ideally, wheeled bin handles should be facing towards the road and the food waste container should be left next to the wheeled bin, box or sack.
After the containers are emptied, the collection crew will return them to the position from which they were collected, providing this is suitable and safe. It is the householders' responsibility to return the containers to within the boundary of their property as soon as possible after they have been emptied and no later than the evening of the day of collection.
Bin lids must be closed and no extra bags or loose residual waste will be collected. Additional recycling will be collected, provided it is in a suitable container, please refer to section 3. It is the householders' responsibility to return uncollected side waste back to their property.
7. Missed bins and containers
All bins and containers must be presented for collection by 7am on the day of collection, as the DWP is unable to guarantee what time collection crews will arrive to empty them. If your property is in Weymouth, Portland, Chickerell or the surrounding area containers need to be put out no later than 6am on the day of collection.
Where a bin is presented correctly (manner, time, day, place, etc) in accordance with this policy document but has been genuinely missed, the DWP will return to empty it.
The DWP will endeavour to collect it within no more than three working days of being notified by the householder.
Where the collection crew is unable to empty a container because it has not been presented correctly (e.g. contains contaminating material), they will leave information indicating why it has not been emptied. In this case, the DWP will not return to empty the bin or container prior to the next scheduled collection. Where a genuine mistake has occurred, additional material may be collected at the next planned collection.
During very cold weather, the food waste in containers can freeze, and on occasion this means they cannot be emptied. In exceptional weather conditions, particularly snow and ice, collections may be suspended. The DWP will make best endeavours to return as soon as conditions have improved and access is possible. Information about alternative collection arrangements will be kept up to date on www.dorsetforyou.com and local media where possible.
There are occasions where collection crews are prevented from accessing bins for collection due to poorly parked vehicles, roadworks, etc. Where this is the case, the DWP will make every effort to return once access becomes available and communicate with householders in affected areas. In exceptional circumstances, if a collection vehicle is repeatedly restricted from accessing bins, residents may be requested to take wheeled bins, containers or sacks to an agreed alternative collection point. Collection crews will not normally wheel out several containers from roads to an access point for emptying.
Where there are persistent problems with access, and there is no reasonable expectation of accessing a road or area, the DWP may not return to empty missed bins. In this case, the DWP will seek to resolve the access issues with individuals and agencies such as the police and highways authority. A possible solution may be to agree a designated collection point.
The DWP reserves the right to alter collection schedules if required, e.g. public holidays. Information about alternative collection arrangements will be kept up to date on www.dorsetforyou.com and in council newsletters.
8. Side waste
The standard residual waste capacity that the DWP provides will be sufficient to hold all household waste that householders produce between collections, provided that appropriate use is made of all the containers supplied. Extra bags, boxes and loose residual waste left next to residual waste bins can attract vermin and create litter.
Additional residual waste presented alongside the residual waste bin or authorised sacks will be deemed as 'side waste' and will not be collected.
The exceptions to this policy are:
- when collections have been delayed or cancelled (e.g. suspension of service due to severe weather conditions);
- on the first collection after the Christmas period a maximum of an additional two sacks of residual waste will be collected if left next to the residual waste bin or authorised sacks. Residents would be required to use their own sacks for this purpose.
When side waste is not collected, the crew will leave information explaining why it has not been collected. The collection crew will not return to collect side waste. It is the householders' responsibility to take back uncollected side waste onto their property. Side waste left on the highway will be deemed to be fly tipping.
Additional recycling will be collected. Please refer to section 3.
Garden waste will not be collected through the standard scheme. Householders may wish to subscribe to the charged fortnightly garden waste collection service.
Collection of Christmas trees
Arrangements will be made each year during January to allow residents who do not subscribe to the garden waste service to put out their Christmas tree alongside their rubbish bin for collection. The dates from which this service will be available may alter each year due to Christmas collection arrangements, however the DWP will issue press releases and make this information available on www.dorsetforyou.com.
Christmas trees collected with the residual waste will be taken for treatment or to landfill.
Residents who subscribe to the optional garden waste collection service can cut up their Christmas tree and place it in their garden waste bin for collection. Logs or large branches (more than six inches in diameter) cannot be collected.
Residents who do not subscribe to the garden waste service but would like their tree to be composted can take it to their local household recycling centre.
9. Overfilled or overweight bins
Bins should not be overfilled or too heavy for the collection vehicles and crew to move and lift safely. If waste is too compacted, it may not come out of the bin when it is tipped into the collection vehicle. In this case, it will be left in the bin and it will be the householders' responsibility to remove this before the next collection. The householders will be expected to remove items that are too heavy to empty.
The householders should make sure that the bin is not overfilled so that the lid can close completely. The DWP will only empty bins that have the lid closed; a part open lid can obstruct the vehicle's lifting equipment and is a health and safety risk.
10. Contaminated bins and containers
The DWP will provide communication and information material to ensure householders are aware of what materials to place in containers and will offer help and support where genuine mistakes have been made. Householders must put the correct materials in the correct bin or container to ensure that they are emptied. The DWP is unable to empty bins or containers that are contaminated and in this event will leave information on the bin advising why. The householders will need to remove all contamination from the bin or container before the next scheduled collection or it will not be emptied.
Only food waste may be placed in the food waste container. Ideally, food waste should be put straight into the container, and the container washed out periodically.
The DWP understand that some residents would prefer to wrap food before placing it into the container and in this instance the following advice should be adhered to prevent contamination:
- a sheet or two of newspaper can be used to wrap food waste. Other types of paper such as magazines or cardboard are not acceptable
- starch or DWP-accepted paper compostable liners are available from many supermarkets and local shops
- no other liners should be used, e.g. plastic bags (including carrier bags marked as biodegradable) as this would contaminate the bin and the DWP will not empty it
Food waste incorporates all cooked and uncooked food waste including:
- meat, fish and bones
- cakes, bread and pastries
- leftovers including plate scrapings
- tea bags and coffee grounds
- pasta and rice
- fruit and vegetable peelings
- cheese and dairy produce
If any other materials apart from 'food' are found in the food waste container information will be left and the container will not be collected. Oil and other liquids are not permitted in the food waste container.
Householders must only put the recycling material as detailed below in their recycling bin and container. Any other material found in the bin and containers will be deemed as contamination and the container may not be collected.
Material collected for recycling will be:
240-litre wheeled bin
- paper and light card
- corrugated cardboard
- tins, cans and aerosols
- plastic bottles and food containers, e.g.: Fizzy drink bottles and squash bottles
- milk bottles
- detergent bottles
- shampoo and shower gel bottles
- yoghurt pots
- margarine tubs
- ice cream containers
- non-polystyrene meat trays
Kerbside recycling box
- glass bottles and jars
- batteries (in a plastic battery bag)
If any other materials apart from those listed are found in the recycling bin or container, information will be left and the bin or container will not be collected. Plastic collection does not include:
- plant pots
- plastic garden furniture
- carrier bags
- expanded polystyrene
- plastic films
- crisp packets and sweet wrappers
- CD cases
The DWP reserves the right to charge for emptying of contaminated recycling bins if requested to do so.
Residual waste containers
Residual waste (rubbish) is the waste that cannot be recycled or composted as part of the standard service. However, some materials cannot be disposed of in the residual waste bin. Residents should not put the following items into the residual waste bin:
- broken glass unless safely wrapped or contained within a wheeled bin;
- rubble, stone, soil and gravel;
- syringes / clinical waste;
- commercial waste;
- garden waste;
- hot ashes;
- liquid paint and oil;
- hazardous waste
- gas canisters.
Separate arrangements may be made for the collection of most of these materials, although a charge may be made. Alternatively, most of these materials may be taken to a local household recycling centre.
11. Responsibility and ownership of bins and containers
All bins and other containers supplied by the DWP remain the property of the DWP. Householders are responsible for keeping the bins and containers safe, clean and reporting any bins that are damaged, lost or stolen. We will replace any containers that become faulty through fair wear and tear. The DWP reserves the right to make a charge to replace any containers damaged because of misuse by the householder.
All new wheeled bins provided by the DWP will be fitted with an electronic identification tag. This will enable us to trace bins that have been stolen or lost.
The DWP will remove any containers that are identified as unauthorised or that have previously been reported as lost or stolen from another address.
The DWP is not responsible for cleaning bins. There are companies that provide a wheeled bin cleaning services.
Wheeled bin damaged during the collection process
On occasion, wheeled bins are damaged during the collection process. Where this occurs the DWP will replace the wheeled bin as soon as is reasonably practicable, free of charge.
Stolen wheeled bin
If a householder suspects that their bin has been stolen, they should contact the DWP in the first instance. If it is believed the bin has genuinely been stolen the householder will be required to report this to the police and obtain a police reference number. Once the DWP receives this information from the householder and is satisfied it is a genuine case of theft, the bin will be replaced free of charge.
If a resident has been subject to antisocial behaviour and their containers have been damaged through no fault of their own the DWP will replace the containers free of charge provided the DWP have been advised of the incident and a police reference number can be provided.
12. Moving home
If a resident moves house they must leave all bins, boxes, containers and authorised sacks behind in a clean condition ready for the next occupant.
Residents who have recently moved into a property are entitled to the standard service and they should contact the DWP if they have non-standard sized containers at the property. If the previous occupant has left behind a contaminated bin, the DWP will empty it on the first occasion when notified.
13. Isolated or inaccessible properties (restricted access)
Wherever possible, the DWP will endeavour to provide the full standard waste and recycling collection service. In some exceptional circumstances, alternative collection arrangements may have to be made and operational managers will make best endeavours to offer a form of recycling.
14. Communal properties
The DWP will seek to provide a service to residents of flats and other communal properties that is equivalent to the standard service. This may include shared bins for recycling, residual waste and food waste. Due to variances in layout of communal properties, each will be assessed by the DWP to agree the collection service to be provided to that location.
In some circumstances, such as large blocks of flats, the DWP will require the name of a contact person for the site and it will be that person's responsibility to notify the DWP of any changes in circumstances or issues that may occur.
Where shared bins are used and the DWP experiences problems of persistent contamination, recycling facilities may be restricted, changed or withdrawn. The DWP reserves the right to charge to clear bins of contaminates.
With effect from 2017/18 there will be a charge for replacement of lost or damaged communal wheeled bins (770l and 1100l bins).
15. New developments
With effect from 2017/18 there will be a charge for the provision, administration and delivery of a full set of 'recycle for Dorset' containers where requested for a new build or new domestic rate paying property. The DWP would encourage the developer to fund the provision of containers however where they are not willing to do so the householder will ultimately be required to cover this cost.
New roads are often not adopted by the highway authority (Dorset County Council) until 12-24 months after completion. Whilst building is ongoing, the DWP will make every effort to collect from properties where possible. However, each new development will be assessed individually and the following requirements must be met:
- where a road is to be adopted, has been completed, and can be safely accessed by collection vehicles, collections will commence. However, collections can only start once a suitable risk assessment has been completed
- for new unadopted roads, the DWP would provide a service if the landowner offers an indemnity against damage and where there is no significant operational difficulty.
- for larger developments, the site will be risk assessed in stages and the DWP will liaise with the developer/site agents to agree suitable collection points to which access can be gained. This may require a number of risk assessments over a period of time
- any properties that are occupied but cannot be provided with kerbside collections will be required to present their containers at an agreed point
- adjustments to the service may need to be considered during the interim stages as there may not be any suitable collection points for multiple wheeled bins/boxes etc.
Additional information is available in a separate document 'recycle for Dorset - Guidance for Developers' regarding the Recycle for Dorset service.
16. Controlled Waste Regulations 2012
In April 2012, the new Controlled Waste Regulations 2012 came into force. The new regulations reclassify waste from some types of premises as chargeable commercial waste, whereas under the previous legislation it was collected free of charge. Key businesses this affects includes providers of self-catering accommodation, B&Bs, camping and caravan sites. Full details of the agreed DWP policy implementing these new regulations can be made available by contacting the DWP commercial waste team.