Annual leaf-clearing operations starting

Additional large mechanical sweepers have been brought in to Aberdeen to help street cleaning staff clear up the thousands of tonnes of leaves from the ground around the city over the next couple of months.

The annual leaf clearing programme will as usual focus on leaf hot spots and areas prone to flooding, to ensure drains are kept as free-flowing as possible especially when the temperatures starting dipping below 0C. Some areas and streets will receive multiple visits from the street cleaning staff at this time of year.

Another reason why pavements are swept of leaves as they can become slippery and dangerous once they start decomposing and again, when the weather gets colder and icy.

In addition to the three extra mechanical street sweepers, extra skips for disposal and to reduce travel times for teams emptying the leaves are also being brought in around the city.

The priority for the remainder of the year for the 40-strong environmental services staff will be leaf-clearing, along with salting pavements if required. The leaves, once collected, are disposed of as green waste.

An Aberdeen City Council spokeswoman said: “Our staff are just at the start of the annual leaf-clearing programme and our priorities are to target known hot-spots and areas prone to flooding.

“The programme is planned every year taking into consideration known areas where there could be problems if the leaves aren’t swept up.

“To give people some context on how much leaves we collect at this time of year, a large brush on a normal summer route will collect litter and debris and need to unload once a day. In the autumn, the same vehicle needs to unload every hour.

“We’d ask people to report any issues with leaves to us where there is a safety concern and our environmental services team will organise for them to be cleared.”

Safety concerns about leaves can be reported at https://www.aberdeencity.gov.uk/services/environment/report-litter-leaves-dirt-or-debris.