Islanders mock 'rubbish' bin rules in windy Outer Hebrides

Scottish islanders have been rubbishing strict new rules on how to present wheelie bins for collection set out by councillors in the Outer Hebrides.

Sunday, 4th October 2020, 7:00 am

Residents have responded with a mixture of disbelief and mockery to instructions from Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, warning householders not to tie down dustbin lids and make sure handles face outwards.

The Western Isles local authority is demanding all bins must also be in the correct position prior to 8am on the morning of collection, regardless of when lorries are due to pick them up.

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Violators face bins not being emptied.

Locals in the wind-battered Western Isles have mocked instructions about bin collections issued by local authority Comhairle nan Eilean Siar
Locals in the wind-battered Western Isles have mocked instructions about bin collections issued by local authority Comhairle nan Eilean Siar

“Comhairle nan Eilean Siar would like to remind residents in the Western Isles of the importance of presenting their wheeled bins correctly at the roadside,” a statement on the authority’s website said.

“Householders and service users are asked to ensure that no ropes, bungee cords or elasticated hooks are left attached to the bins as these could pose a hazard to our members of staff when loading bins onto the rear of the collection vehicle.”

It continued: “Any bins not presented correctly at the roadside may not be emptied.”

Reactions from locals on social media have ranged from the sarcastic to the hilarious, with many pointing out difficulties presented by the blustery climate in the islands.

Wrong: Western Isles council is demanding wheelie bins should be presented with handles facing outwards

Some suggested the council advice must be a prank.

“Is this from April 1st,” Sane Tandroo said on Twitter.

"We live in one of the windiest places on earth. An untethered bin in winter is likely to distribute one’s fortnightly household refuse somewhere between Sula Sgeir and Norway. Followed by a two-hour hunt for the actual bin.”

Jenny Pain posted: “I think someone at the council must have a sense of humour if they think our bins are going to line up nicely and stay there.”

Correct: Not only must handles face outwards, bin lids should not be secured with ropes, bungee cords or elasticated hooks that could injure refuse collection workers

Sarah Duce, said: “All well and good. My bins are a mile from my house and if I don’t tie them they blow away, leaving a trail of rubbish.”

Sharon Bland added: “And no smiling or talking when presenting your bin.”

There was also confusion over the necessity of the requirements.

Solarsaver-Chris W asked: “Who would be liable for a traffic incident where vehicles collide and persons are injured trying to avoid mobile bins?

“A risk assessment had shown that exposed bins should be safely restrained where necessary.”

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