Why Bulk Trash Crews Are Behind in Dallas – and When to Expect Pickup

Are you frustrated with the growing trash piles in your neighborhood? Many in Dallas are still dealing with cluttered curbs from June storms. While it may seem like your area was forgotten, the city said more than 100 trucks are out on the streets clearing debris.

Among the monstrous piles at the city's temporary storm debris facility near the High Five, you'll find a massive effort to get Dallas cleaned up.

Chris Roberts is the city's longtime grinding contractor. He said crews are working overtime to catch up.

"14 hours a day, seven days a week but we will get it under control," said Roberts, of National Waste Management.  

Brand new numbers show the city now has 35 contractors on top of its usual sanitation crews. Together they're tackling the estimated 70,000 tons of waste created by the June 9 micro-burst. Compare that to the usual 14,000 in a typical month. 

"It's pretty bad. The city's on top of it though and so am I," Roberts said.

The storm rocked Northwood Hills in North Dallas. The day after it hit, we found 100-year-old trees uprooted and branch piles everywhere. While a few remain, most of the neighborhood is now clear. It's just one example of progress after that storm nearly four weeks ago. 

But some of the frustration once felt there has now spread throughout the city.

"Not a lot of communication, don't know what's going on," said Mark Joseph, who lives south of I-635 near Hillcrest. 

Heap after heap, homeowners across the area are still waiting on relief.

"I drive a big ole SUV so I'm always like.. I've gotta be very careful or else I'm gonna get scraped by all the brush in the driveway," Joseph said.  

Bulk trash pickups are devoted solely to storm debris for the rest of the month, but Joseph's cul-de-sac is seven days past due.

"Just kind of desensitized to it at this point, but it'd be nicer if people could see the front of the house," he said.

The city said crews are sticking to their schedule, but they're running about a week behind. Part of the problem, sanitation workers said, is that people are still mixing household items and plastic in with their debris. That's causing extra delays because of hand sorting. Crews are asking for cooperation and patience while they get back to the grind. All of the debris they're collecting is being crushed to small pieces that can be recycled.

Again, for the rest of July, make sure you're only putting storm clutter by the curb. The city said crews will pick it up. Bulk trash pickups are expected to return to normal next month.

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