By Michael Ward
To the Editor
NORWALK, Conn. – This letter was sent to Norwalk customer service, Department of Public Works Director Hal Alvord and District A Council members David Watts and Matt Miklave, both Democrats.
Shortly before City Carting started the collection of residential garbage for the city of Norwalk, I purchased a new garbage can with an attached lid from Home Depot. A few weeks after City Carting started the routes, my lid was broken off and gone forever. Rubbermaid was kind enough to send me a new lid for free. At the end of June the lid was gone again. I paid for a new lid and installed it last week. I came out this morning while your truck was collecting the garbage and watched your employee toss my can back off the street sending my new lid flying down the street feet away from its intended protectee (the garbage can).
This is the third such incident. My neighbors who have the same Rubbermaid can are also missing their lids. This is not a design problem, as Rubbermaid has manufactured and marketed (I am sure) millions of these cans.
Section 94-5 of the city code states:
A. The owner of each premises, residential or commercial, where solid waste is created or generated shall provide, at a suitable place upon such premises and not on the street or sidewalk, sufficient receptacles for receiving and holding such solid waste during the intervals between collections. Solid waste shall be stored in watertight, tightly covered cans or rigid containers; garbage shall not be placed out for collection in plastic bags. The standard unit of collection for household solid waste shall be 20- and 30-gallon containers. Each receptacle shall not weigh more than 75 pounds when full. Containers shall be maintained in good condition, free of holes and fissures and shall be equipped with securely fitting covers. No loose material will be collected by the city.
B. All refuse containers shall be maintained by the owners thereof and promptly replaced when no longer fit for use. Containers not conforming to the requirements set forth by this chapter and deemed a sanitary or accident hazard, as determined by the director or his duly authorized agents, may be confiscated by the city and disposed of, without compensation to the owner.
I now find myself responsible to purchase a new garbage can as per the city code as the lid will no longer remain on the can. Besides keeping animals from pulling waste out of the cans, the lid keeps rainwater out of the can keeping them lighter so that the collector does not hurt himself lifting it into the truck or worse, leaving the can unemptied because it now exceeds the specified weight of 75 pounds, as per 94-5a.
The without compensation clause of 94-5b is a burden on someone who has gone out of his way to comply with the code. My garbage can was vandalized by your employees while fulfilling a city contract to collect the refuse from within them and after three incidents, I do consider it an act of vandalism. This email is to serve notice that once I replace this can, should it occur again, I will contact the police about it.
A Rainbow Road resident