Putting rubbish in its place

HFS continue to keep the streets clean

New Cutter

  • 9 Jul 2020

As the lockdown eases gradually the teams from Home Fix Scotland (HFS) are becoming more visible around Inverclyde and their work is not going unnoticed.

Government guidelines meant that the HFS Environmental team ran a restricted, skeleton service during the early stages of lockdown. This led to an increased focus on essential tasks such as communal close cleaning, fly-tipping and grass cutting.

Yet a restricted service hasn’t equated to a restricted effort. During this period, staff have removed over 180 tons of rubbish from the streets of Inverclyde – that is nearly the same weight as two Blue Whales! Like all areas in Scotland, Inverclyde saw an increase in fly-tipping with people dumping various items of household waste from white goods and mattresses to soiled nappies. As well as attracting vermin, many of these items also pose a fire hazard jeopardizing the safety of those living nearby. Although it is a minority, customers are reminded of their responsibility to dispose of items correctly, through the recycling centres run by Inverclyde Council which are now open again.

Staff from Home Fix Scotland have also been busy cutting grass. Since lockdown began, they have cut over 1,200,000 square foot of grass - the equivalent of 168 football pitches, ensuring that those wishing to exercise, collect medication or go to their essential workplace can do so safely. Although the Environmental team have successfully navigated many of the obstacles posed by Covid-19, other areas of the organisation remain busy. To alleviate some of these pressures and save customers time, those with grass cutting enquiries are being urged to check they’re contacting the correct authority prior to calling.

Tam Rough, Contracts Manager at Home Fix Scotland has commended his team’s efforts given that many were redeployed or retrained in a variety of different roles while restrictions were in place: “Everyone has felt the impact of Covid-19 and people across Inverclyde have been very supportive of our staff as they continued to provide a high level of service during these difficult times.

“The safety of our colleagues and the public has always been at the forefront of our planning, and careful consideration has been given to redesigning working practices to comply with the current guidance. While this has had an inevitable impact on our day-to-day services, it has remained critical that we focused our efforts on those in the greatest need, and the frontline services that people rely on.”

In wake of the Scottish Government easing Covid-19 regulations, the Environmental Team has this week resumed a full service and is now only two weeks away from being back on track.

John Williams, Head of Operations at Home Fix Scotland said: “As staff begin to return to their own services, I would urge everyone to continue offering their support to our teams over the weeks and months to come.

"As always. we will keep the situation under review to ensure our resources are deployed where they are needed, and in line with Government guidelines.”