Trash Truck Traffic Impacts
How would a contracted system change the number of trash trucks in neighborhoods?
For most residential streets, the number of trash trucks could decrease in a contracted system because there would only be one company providing service under the contract. Currently, a typical neighborhood street experiences an average of 10-12 truck passes every two weeks. Under a contracted system, neighborhood trash truck traffic could be decreased to an average of three passes every two weeks, but it could be five passes to accommodate add-on services such as weekly composting.
How would fewer trash trucks on neighborhood streets help?
Trash trucks are among the most polluting vehicles on residential streets. Nearly 90% of U.S. trash trucks are diesel fueled, which produces an exhaust that includes substances that have been proven to be detrimental to human health, including nitrogen oxides and particulate matter. These trucks average less than 3 mpg, and their constant accelerating and decelerating between stops poses a challenge for exhaust systems that work better at higher speeds.
These trucks also cause substantial damage to city streets, both because they are typically much heavier than other delivery vehicles and they make very frequent stops. According to the Colorado Department of Transportation, a local street wears out over 7,000 times faster for each additional trash truck.
Consultation has concluded