Leaves are just starting to fall and the Department of Public Works is ready to deploy 200 employees Monday, November 8, 2010 to start collecting them. Leaf collection season runs through January 15, 2011, and every neighborhood in the District will have its leaves collected.
“Leaf collection is our most labor-intensive program,” said DPW Director William O. Howland Jr. “For two and a half months, our crews work six days a week, including Veterans Day and Thanksgiving Day, across the District. We give each neighborhood two, two-week collection cycles, so please check the leaf collection brochure, which was mailed to households receiving DPW trash/recycling collection services, or go online to leaf.dcgis.dc.gov learn your collection weeks.”
Mr. Howland added that the program works most effectively when residents rake their leaves into the treebox spaces the weekend before the beginning of their neighborhood’s collection cycles. “The crews move fairly quickly, especially in the opening weeks because there are fewer leaves, so to make sure your leaves are collected, please rake them into the treebox space or bag them the weekend before the collection cycle begins.”
Here are some tips for a smooth-running leaf collection season:
- Look up your street’s collection schedule at leaf.dcgis.dc.gov.
- Rake leaves into the treebox space the weekend before your street’s collection cycles.
- Please – leaves only! Tree limbs, bricks, dirt, rocks, etc., will damage the equipment and delay collections.
- Prevent fires, parking problems and possible flooding by placing leaves in the treebox space, not in the street. When it rains, leaves will block the storm drain and cause flooding. Please remove any leaves you see blocking the storm drain.
- If you choose to bag your leaves, please use paper bags. Plastic bags will damage the equipment. You may place bagged leaves in the treebox space or next to the trash/recycling container(s).
- Protect the safety of our crews by driving slowly around their work area or change your route and avoid them altogether.
Leaf collection season coincides with the beginning of snow season. Mr. Howland said, “I want to remind residents that the leaf collection crews are the backbone of the snow removal program, which means when snow and/or ice are predicted, we stop collecting leaves to convert our leaf equipment to snow plows. No leaves are collected until after the snow event ends. Sometimes predictions don’t result in snow, but we must have our snow equipment on the street regardless.”