Wilmington bans non-city-issued trash cans after sanitation worker injuries

Wilmington trash collectors will only empty these city-issued cans starting immediately. (Courtesy of City of Wilmington)

Wilmington trash collectors will only empty these city-issued cans starting immediately. (Courtesy of City of Wilmington)

More than a dozen sanitation workers in Wilmington have been injured by trash cans not approved by the city.

As a result, Wilmington trash collectors will only collect trash that’s placed in city-issued cans starting immediately.

City public works director Kelly Williams says the cans distributed by the city are designed to handle the wear and tear of being picked up by the trash truck’s mechanical arms and dumped.

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Store-bought cans sometimes called “Toters” or “toter-carts” are less sturdy, resulting in the metal cross bars used to lift the cans becoming detached, injuring workers.

“We usually give more notice when we make a change like this, but the potential for employee injury prevents that and we apologize,” Williams said.

Sanitation workers have already started placing yellow stickers on trash containers that will no longer be collected to let residents know their can is not acceptable.

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Wilmington residents without a city-issued can can get one delivered free-of-charge by calling 311.

In early 2020, the city distributed trash bins to 21,000 residential properties as part of Mayor Mike Purzcyki’s Beautiful City Campaign.

The new can requirements go into effect on Monday for residents on the east side of the city, and Tuesday for those on the west side.

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