How Often are CoEL Trash and Recycling Carts Trashed or Recycled?

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An East Lansing curbside recycling cart.

When an East Lansing Info reader saw chatter on social media regarding a trash truck causing damage to a neighbor’s trash cart, she wondered how often this happened. Are these trash and recycling carts reaching the end of their manufactured life? Are the truck arms damaging the carts upon pickup? Or is there another cause behind the need to replace or repair a trash or recycling cart?

After the reader contacted ELi, we filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to find out more about trash and recycling carts under the City of East Lansing’s jurisdiction.

The request revealed sufficient data regarding the quantity of trash and recycling carts currently in use in the city during the past 365 days, as well as the quantity of trash and recycling carts requiring replacement or repair in the past 365 days.

In the fall of 2015, a grant from The Recycling Partnership, alongside matching funds from the City, supplied new, no-cost, 96-gallon recycling carts to residents of East Lansing. Since new recycling carts were provided to all residents only six years ago, the rate of repair and replacement of these carts in the past 365 days was expected to be fairly low.

Of the 7,013 recycling carts in the city being serviced by East Lansing’s Department of Public Works (DPW), a total of 22 carts were repaired and three carts were replaced.  This means that only 0.4% of carts have been repaired or replaced in the previous 365 days.

Trash carts were found to have a higher rate of repair/replacement at 2.5%. Out of the 7,126 trash carts in service in East Lansing today, 93 were repaired, and 87 were replaced in the previous 365 days.

For assistance in recycling or trash cart repair or replacement, call DPW at (517) 337-9459.

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