Is your trash piling up? Here’s when to expect your next garbage pick-up

Trash piles up in Raleigh, N.C., in 2009 as snow left garbage crews behind in picking up trash.
Trash piles up in Raleigh, N.C., in 2009 as snow left garbage crews behind in picking up trash. McClatchy file

As the wintry weather winds down during one of the coldest Februarys on record, many Whatcom County residents are seeing their trash pile up after the Sanitary Service Company missed pick-ups because of unsafe road conditions. SSC said it’s working to resume normally scheduled pickups, but safety is a priority and it can’t be sure of the road conditions everywhere, according to a Monday afternoon press release.

Depending on location, Whatcom County residents saw 6 to more than 18 inches of snow from Feb. 10 through Feb. 14, according to previous stories in The Bellingham Herald. The storm, which brought the second round of snow in two weeks and high winds, caused school closures, car crashes, fallen trees and power outages.

If trash and recycling wasn’t collected, people are asked to leave their containers out on the curb, and should expect it to be picked up on their next regularly scheduled day, the release states. SSC is asking people to brush any remaining snow off their containers.

If a pick-up was missed, SSC will take extra material at no extra charge and is asking people to use plastic bags for extra garbage, the release states. For extra recycling, place the extra material next to recycling bins in an open cardboard box or plastic container.

If people can’t wait for their next regularly scheduled pick-up, garbage, recycling and extra material is being accepted free of charge at one of the three Drop Box Facility and Recycling Centers located in Bellingham, Birch Bay and Cedarville.

The Bellingham facility, located at 1001 Roeder Ave., at the corner of F and Roeder streets is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. It is closed from noon to 1 p.m.

The Birch Bay facility, located at 4297 Birch Bay-Lynden Road, is only open Sundays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The Cedarville facility, located on Cedarville Road about ¼ mile off Mt. Baker Highway in Everson, is only open Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

More information can be found online at ssc-inc.com.

Residents in Sudden Valley can take their trash to Area Z, which has bins for use, according to SSC.

SSC was established in 1929 and is Whatcom County’s largest recycling and garbage collection service provider, serving more than 45,000 customers across the county.

Tips to prevent windblown litter:

If possible, avoid putting bins out on really windy days. If they’re less than half-full, consider waiting for the next pick-up.

Stacking bins: Do not stack your bins in windy weather. Set singly on the ground, back to front, facing away from the wind.

Tub-style bins: Nest them inside each other to secure materials from the wind.

Bottles, cans & plastic containers bins: Place heavier items (glass bottles, jars) on top to prevent lighter plastics from blowing away. If stacking/nesting, put this bin on the ground first.

Newspaper bins: Place newspapers in a paper sack and lay on its side in the bin. If stacking/nesting, place this bin in the middle.

Scrap paper bins: Place mixed paper in paper bag and lay on its side in the bin. If stacking/nesting, place this bin on top.

Cardboard: Flatten boxes, place them on the ground with the bin on top.

Reporter Denver Pratt joined The Bellingham Herald in 2017 and covers courts and criminal and social justice. She has worked in Montana, Florida and Virginia.