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Hampton Roads residents notice recycling pickup delay, officials say shortage of drivers is to blame

Leaders with the city of Virginia Beach said the recycling pickup delay is because there is a shortage of CDL drivers with TFC Recycling.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — More blue carts are staying on the curb.

Several people may be wondering why their recycling isn’t getting picked up. It’s a national issue, impacting cities across Hampton Roads.

Every other week, TFC crews pick up recycling, but some people have noticed it’s taking longer than normal.

“Some days, some weeks they are on time. Some weeks they are way off the mark,” Williams said.

 David Williams cuts grass on the side.

 When he work in Virginia Beach, he said he’s always moving the cans out of the way to do his job.

“I don’t mind so much taking the empty ones back to someone’s back yards but the full one, kind of gets on your nerves,” explained Williams.

Leaders with the city of Virginia Beach said the recycling pickup delay is because there is a shortage of CDL drivers with TFC Recycling. The company is contracted with the city of Virginia Beach.

“That private contractor has been working to not only retain the drivers that they have, but to hire and train new drivers to get them familiar with the routes,” explained Virginia Beach’s Recycling Coordinator, Kristi Rines.

Finding CDL drivers is a nationwide challenge. Rines said TFC covers more than 20 routes a day. The company is currently down about ten CDL drivers.

Rines said, “When we are looking at a city wide coverage, that’s quite a substantial hit.”

Those TFC crews are working six-days a week, trying to keep up with the demand. Rines said over the past couple of months city officials have met with TFC Recycling leaders.

“We have gone over our concerns and we’ve listened to them talk about their concerns that not only that they are in, but everyone is in,” Rines explained.

Rines asks for people’s patience and said if your recycling hasn’t been emptied to leave it on the street. If it isn’t picked up by noon the next day after your normal collection day, city officials say call Virginia Beach Waste Management. 

As for regular Virginia Beach trash pickup, Rines said it’s on schedule. She said they currently don’t have a shortage or drivers for trash pickup