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August 09, 2020

Entire Upper Darby Sanitation Division quarantining for two weeks due to COVID-19 outbreak among staff

Trash collection is expected to resume on Monday, August 24th, the township said

Sanitation COVID-19
Upper Darby Sanitation Department Street View/Google

The township has started developing a contingency plan that will be unveiled this week for trash collection over the next 14 days, Mayor Barbarann Keffer said.

UPDATE: Trash collection in Upper Darby will resume on Monday, August 10, the township said Sunday. A number of sanitation workers have been hired to continue service while the Sanitation Division is self-quarantined for 14 days due to a COVID-19 outbreak among staff. While trash collection will continue, recycling collection will be suspended for two weeks.

Due to a COVID-19 outbreak among its staff, the entire Upper Darby Sanitation Division is self-isolating for 14 days through August 21.

The decision to quarantine the Delaware County township’s entire sanitation department was “in the best interest of our township workforce and our township residents” and “in consultation with township employees and their union leaders,” Mayor Barbarann Keffer said.

The township has started developing a contingency plan that will be unveiled this week for trash collection over the next 14 days, Keffer said.

”It is very important that everyone understands that the health and safety of our township employees and residents is our primary concern,” Keffer said. “We will get through this with the best outcomes if we stick together.”

“Since the outbreak in March, we have taken every possible safety measure and done our best to observe all guidance and protocols, however the nature of this global pandemic is such that these steps are now required.”

Regular trash pickup is resuming with a new schedule on Monday, August 24th, as Keffer said that it will give the department enough time for a healthy reset for both township employees and residents.

However, it’s unclear how many sanitation workers have tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

A similar situation has occurred within the Philadelphia Streets Department, as several sanitation workers have contracted COVID-19 over the past month.

That, along with extreme weather and increased trash tonnage, has led to delays in trash and recycling collection across the city in recent weeks.

The Streets Department has added workers on a temporary basis to address the ongoing delays, and city officials hope to resolve the issue soon. 

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