Philadelphia residents say trash pick-up delays stinking up neighborhood

Katherine Scott Image
Wednesday, July 15, 2020
Philly residents say trash-pick delays stink
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Trash pick-up delays are leaving residents in Philadelphia frustrated.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Trash pick-up delays are leaving residents in Philadelphia frustrated.

Complaints about it have been reported to Action News from multiple neighborhoods across the city, including Mayfair.

"Because it's summer, we have the heat and everything else. It's disgusting, you know," Rose Socket of Mayfair said.

On Wednesday, flies could be seen zooming around the piles of trash accumulating on Shelmire Avenue by Crispin Street.

Trash pick-up in the neighborhood was supposed to be last Friday. Crews finally arrived late Wednesday morning.

Resident Jairo Rein remarked, "The smell is terrible."

"It's ridiculous. It's absolutely ridiculous, but I don't know who else to call," neighbor Carmen Lowry.

The Streets Department announced this week that trash and recycling pickup would be delayed by a day citywide, adding there have been delays through the pandemic.

Crews worked throughout last weekend, but could not collect everything.

"It stinks. I can't even go on my street because it smells too bad, and I'm afraid of disease," Theresa Franks said.

"It's very bad now for squirrels, for insects.Very bad for kids, too. It's not safe at all," Shaimaa el Gharbawi said.

The Streets Department points to an increase in tonnage curbside during the pandemic and the July 4 holiday, as well as recent severe weather and flooding that has exacerbated the problem.

According to our data journalism team, the city has seen 22,946 complaints since April 1. That means the city that used to see around 520 garbage pick-up complaints in a week, is now getting more than 1,765.

"It's bad. We need it cleaned up and we need it cleaned up now," resident Steven Tartaglione said,

The Streets Department added that crews are working as quickly and as safely as possible.