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Snow spurs trash talk in Lehigh, Berks counties

By Jamie Stover, Reporter, JStover@wfmz.com
Published On: Feb 23 2014 05:00:50 PM CST
Updated On: Feb 24 2014 04:51:00 AM CST

Many municipalities in the region are struggling to remove trash due to large snow piles blocking access to narrow streets.

Trash is piling up in municipalities throughout the region.

Recent snowstorms delayed trash removal services in several communities, including Reading. Some residents have sanitary concerns.

"The mice, the roaches. I have a small kid. I don't want him digging in the trash," said Yisel Rios, a Reading resident.

Residents said their trash hasn't been picked up in three weeks. Trash is now cluttering sidewalks and spilling into streets.

"Yeah, it stinks. People have trash in their yards. I mean, come on," said a Reading resident.

The city attributes the backup to too much snow.

"The main problem has been access to the narrower streets," said Ralph Johnson, Reading's public works director.

Crews were out collecting trash this weekend to try and get back on schedule. Johnson said the city hopes to be back on track by the middle of this week.

Trash removal delays are a problem in parts of Fountain Hill, Lehigh Co., too.

"It is horrible. Worse than living in slum conditions," said Debbie Baron, a Fountain Hill resident.

Baron said her trash was last picked up two weeks ago. It's been five weeks since crews emptied her recycling bin.

The Fountain Hill Public Works Department asked for patience and encouraged people to consolidate their trash. Officials said crews are doing the best they can given the circumstances.

"We can understand it being delayed, but we feel completely abandoned at this point," Baron said.

Barring more snow, Fountain Hill officials said trash collection services should be back to normal this week.

Officials asked residents to make sure their garbage is accessible for when crews arrive.