New Melton bin lorries will be equipped with surveillance cameras to monitor and record rubbish collections from every home and incidents where motorists dangerously attempt to overtake on kerbs and footpaths.
Biffa has retained its waste contract for the 23,000 households across the borough with a new deal with the council which will save the authority £4million over the next 10 years.
And one of the innovations which helped it win the tender process was the intention to use new refuse collection vehicles fitted with 360 degree cameras from the start of the new contract, on October 1.
Raman Selvon, the council’s waste and environmental maintenance manager, told the Melton Times: “The cameras will record video around each vehicle from the moment they go out on their rounds.
“So if a customer complains that their bin has not been collected it will be possible to check the video and find out why and if there were any issues with it not being left in the right place or if the waste was contaminated.
“We also get a lot of instances of impatient motorists trying to overtake our refuse lorries on the footpaths rather than wait a few moments - this is really dangerous and again this will be picked up by the cameras.
“The video can also be checked when we get complaints that our lorry has scraped down the side of someone’s parked vehicle.”
Staff on the bin vans will also start making digital records each time they complete a street or road collection to give council employees real time information on where the vehicles are at any given moment so they can tell residents who call in to ask.
Some collection days may change as a result of the new contract because Biffa need to reorganise the routes it uses.
Mr Selvon said: “When we collect in the north of the borough we have been taking the waste to a tip at Colsterworth but that will be closing soon so all of our waste will be taken soon to the Syston tip.
“We will write to every householder to tell them about collection dates when the new contract comes in.”
The alternate weekly collections of general waste and recycling will remain but, from October, residents will be able to leave out textiles and small electrical items separately, which it is hoped will improve further on the council’s 48 per cent recycling rate.
Garden waste collections will continue through the Green Waste Club with a price freeze for the first year.
Council leader, Councillor Joe Orson, said: “I am pleased that we have been able to ensure that weekly collections are maintained.
“The new contract results in an annual saving and with an enhanced recycling offer will be a great asset to the borough, not only ensuring that we remain at the forefront of recycling, but that we also remain in budget.
“What’s also great is that our recycling will now be processed within Leicestershire rather than travelling to the West Midlands so we have a reduced carbon footprint. It really is all excellent news for Melton.”
Alongside waste collection, Biffa’s street cleaning service will also be improved with crews again utilising the latest technology for real time reporting of incidents like fly-tipping and graffiti via hand held computers, ensuring a quicker and more effective response.
An information pack will be provided to residents ahead of the start of the new contract detailing any changes more thoroughly.