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The city is in a sticky situation as some residents from Ewa to Makaha deal with a stinky mess. Trash has been piling up all weekend after two routes were missing.
The large metal trash bins are smelly, unsightly, and a source of frustration for residents at Ewalani Village.
“When I stay in my house, it’s still smelly,” Ewalani Village residents Helen Padayao said.
Their trash was supposed to get picked up Friday, but it’s still sitting there four days later.
Crews also missed the Ewa Apartments and Palm Villas. That’s where property manager Phill Huth couldn’t take it any longer as his 19 metal trash bins overflowed.
“At six o’clock, I had to make the decision to hire a private company that charged $1,500 to do our trash on Sunday because no pickup on Saturday,” Huth said.
The city picks up metal trash bins at certain townhouses and condos that can accommodate its trucks. Two routes covering Ewa to Makaha were all missed because three of the city’s front-end loaders were down for repairs.
KHON2 checked further and found out there are a total of seven such trucks on Oahu. All but two are out of service.
“It seems every month there are one to two trucks that are down. That leaves one truck trying to pick up the slack,” Huth said.
Carroll Cox with Envirowatch says the problem is that the city has not purchased any new front-end loader trucks.
The Department of Environmental Services says there’s no money this fiscal year to get new ones. They cost about $200,000 to $300,000 each.
“Not only is this community not getting serviced properly and timely, it is costing the taxpayer more money because those two drivers servicing delinquent routes are getting over time,” Cox said.
KHON2 saw one crew that was on overtime on Monday, hitting areas that were missed.
The city has also hired a private hauler to help at a cost of $8,000 to $9,000.
The city expects to get all the missed pickups on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.
As for when those trucks will be back on the road, the city hopes for one on Wednesday and another by the end of the week.