After a relentless pursuit – that often involved following garbage trucks on foot and by car – Miami Beach this week reported progress in its effort to put an end to garbage trucks leaking their contents onto City streets and alleyways.
Earlier this year, in response to activist Michael DeFilippi and members of his Clean Up Miami Beach Facebook group, the City began a crackdown on leaky garbage trucks. The approach involved fines and repairs to prevent recurrences.
Jay Fink, Assistant Director of the City’s Public Works Department, told the Commission Sustainability and Resiliency Committee that the City’s two haulers, Waste Management and Waste Connections, were both upgrading their fleets as well as repairing the seals on their older trucks. Fink, who took his turn following trucks on foot, said whenever a leaking truck was spotted, the companies were told they had to remove the truck from the streets until it was fixed. The crackdown is working. Fink said, “From my point of view, we’re seeing much better compliance.” When asked by Committee Chair Commissioner Michael Grieco if this was simply a response to the fines, Fink said, “We put the hammer down. It worked. We continue to follow through.”
Sarah Saunders, Code Compliance Manager, said “We are no longer receiving complaints” and the last fine for a violation was issued on March 14th.
Committee Chair, Michael Grieco, said, “The concept of being able to maintain or improve the quality of our alleys is obviously an issue as well with the residential neighborhoods and kids playing. It’s gross. The idea that it’s being fixed and we’re almost at 100%, it’s great.”
Commissioner John Alemán asked Staff to continue the City's public information campaign (illustration below) to report any violations as another way to keep up with the progress.
Top Photo: Michael DeFilippi
Campaign image: City of Miami Beach
Crackdown on Leaky Trash Trucks Successful:
waste haulers cleaning up their acts