Waste contractor Biffa has 'mega problems'

Biffa bin lorry in North Somerset Image copyright North Somerset Council
Image caption Biffa won the North Somerset Council contract in March 2017

A waste firm accused of repeated delays to bin collections in North Somerset is under pressure from the council to improve its service.

Biffa took over the £50m contract in March 2017 and initially blamed problems on being new to the job, said the council.

Since 3 July North Somerset Council has posted 13 notices about service delays.

Biffa said it currently had staffing issues, but it was trying to improve its service.

'Working hard'

The council's deputy leader, Mike Bell, said: "I totally sympathise with residents who are fed up of hearing explanations.

"We all understand that things can happen - accidents, breakdown, sickness, and the hot weather does make it more difficult... but the bottom line is they're paid by taxpayers to deliver a service and they have to have plans in place to support staff when these problems happen and they have been failing to do that."

People have posted reactions on the council's Facebook page describing the service as "useless" and "not fit for purpose".

A spokesman for Biffa said: "We are aware of the issues in North Somerset and apologise for the inconvenience caused.

"Unfortunately we have had some difficulties with staffing levels in the area which has resulted in some missed collections.

"We are working hard to make any outstanding collections as quickly as possible and get services back to normal."

Mr Bell said the council was in daily contact with the firm and the pressure was on Biffa to improve.

The firm's contract for bin collections and recycling expires in 2024.

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