Last month’s snowstorms and freezing temperatures didn’t make hauling any easier. Yet, all things considered, Tulsa’s trash customers were for the most part well served, with service canceled just one day — Feb. 15. That led to later-than-usual pickup times for the rest of that week as crews worked in terrible conditions through Feb. 20 to catch up. They didn’t quite make it, though.

Maureen Turner, manager of refuse and recycling services for the city, said crews picked up 1,041 tons of refuse that week, down from the 1,775 tons picked up in an average week in February. That left trash haulers with about 700 extra tons of refuse to pick up last week. Recycling service, meanwhile, resumed last week after the city had halted it for two weeks. “We were like, you know what, let’s pick up the trash as best we can,” Turner said. “Recycling doesn’t stink, it doesn’t create any hazards, you don’t have any birds or rodents or anything trying to get into that, and so we felt it was much more important that we try to get the trash picked up as best we can.”

Tulsans should not expect to see their trash and recycling bills increase as a result of the storm. “The customers’ fees will not change,” Turner said. The only additional costs incurred by the Tulsa Authority for the Recover of Energy — the public trust that oversees the city’s refuse and recycling services — as a result of the storms were for dumping trash at a landfill and overtime pay for the city’s bulky waste crews, Turner said.
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Author: Kevin Canfield, Tulsa World
Image: Stephen Pingry, Tulsa World