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Bigbelly bins are ‘vile’ and ‘unhygienic’ say Chester residents

But council says there are 'no issues' and bins are inspected and cleaned daily

“They’re disgusting, never cleaned and full of bacteria"(Image: Chris Jeffery)

Dozens of Chronicle readers expressed their dislike for the council’s smart waste Bigbelly bins this week.

Comments flooded social media following a report stating waste collection in the borough had improved dramatically.

Last week Cheshire West and Chester Council boasted that it is the UK’s most efficient user of the Bigbelly units.

Since the installation of 60 bins the council has reduced its annual collections by about 94% from 209,160 to 12,801.

However readers say the bins are not only hard to use, but ‘disgusting, never cleaned and full of bacteria’.

Too dirty to handle

“Just wish I didn’t have to touch the handle. They’ve usually got sauce and gum on them” - Ryan Matthews

“Having to touch the handle is vile and such an unnecessary thing when it could easily just be an opening” - Holly Sinclair

“Don’t like touching the handle - must be absolutely filthy” - Ian Burns

“Most of the time I have to just leave my rubbish on the top of the bin to avoid touching the handle” - Sam Jones

Unhygienic

"Hey council, I don’t wanna touch your filthy bin!"(Image: Chris Jeffery)

“They’re disgusting, never cleaned and full of bacteria. Good idea, but clean them. You do not know what diseases people have got and could catch something” - Tom Cooke

“I hate these bins they are VERY unhygienic. I do not want to touch the handle that will have loads of germs on!” - Alex Sailor Jerry Cefai

“Disgusting! The germs on that handle!” - Lesley Brookes

“I just think its understandable that people don’t want to touch a filthy bin handle, especially while eating. Hey council, I don’t wanna touch your filthy bin!” - Jonny Jones

Tricky to use

“No good if you're disabled with a stick. You need two free hands, one to hold open and the other to put your rubbish in. I have helped many a disabled and elderly person to use them” - Chris Redmond

“Hate them. I never want to touch the handle and they’re more awkward to use, especially when carrying things” - Danielle Davies

“I hate these bins they are VERY unhygienic"(Image: Chris Jeffery)

Smelly

“Horrible things, smells and riddled with germs!” - Lorraine Roberts

“There are occasions when people have left them open and that ashtray bit stinks to high heaven” - Yvonne Woodcock

Suggestions and solutions

“Just got to make them so they open automatically when someone waves at them or even just a simple peddle so we don’t have to touch the damn handle” - Samantha Jones

“Here’s one that will make you think. How often do you touch a button at a pedestrian crossing? How often do you pull handles on outside doors?

“How often do you turn off the tap after washing your hands in a public convenience?

“How often do you touch food (either tin/packet) to look at the ingredients and in some cases you may put it back on the shelf?

“How often do you handle loose change when purchasing goods?

“We live in a world where we constantly eat food on the go...

“Makes you think, eh?” - Karl Cleveley

"Horrible things, smells and riddled with germs"(Image: Chris Jeffery)

The Bigbelly system is the cloud-based Clean management console which delivers both real-time and historical collection data.

Unlike traditional bins which are emptied regardless of whether they are full or not, each station alerts collection teams when it requires emptying.

They also notify collection teams when they are not full and can be missed off the collection round.

Solar compaction technology increases its collection capacity up to 808 litres when full, further reducing collection frequencies.

It also cuts the operational cost of waste collection, vehicle movements and carbon emissions.

In response to the comments the council’s director of place operations Maria Byrne said: “The Bigbelly bins have been in place in Chester since June 2015 and are regularly used by residents and visitors to the city with no issues at all.

"The design of the bins is intended to prevent placement of larger items other than litter such as trade waste sacks preventing misuse.

"The external surface of the bins are inspected daily, the handles and external surface wiped down and monitored throughout the day with additional cleansing carried out when required.

"In addition there is a regular programme of deep cleansing of the units inside and out, in general these units are cleaner and easier to maintain than conventional bins.

"We are talking to our suppliers to investigate if the bins can be modified to include a foot pedal mechanism.”

Bigbelly was contacted for comments, but did not respond by time of publication.

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