Thursday, January 6, 2011

NYC Finally Signs Onto My Obsession!

Maybe I've talked about garbage here a little too often, but now all of NY is talking about it!  Hah!  If you're not from NY, you'll be forgiven for not being up on our Dept. of Sanitation woes, but let me give you a short recap.

First, we had a blizzard.  The garbage trucks donned their plows (sorta) and stopped picking up trash in favor of moving snow. Sorta.  This usually works fine, but the snow removal part of their job didn't go so well this time.  I'm not going to go into it too much...just the high points, but I will link Gothamist's page that you get when you search for stories mentioning "Sanitation".  There are a gazillion stories about it there.  (Do yourself a favor, though and read the one article about the strippers who are pissed off because the snow got piled up in front of their door!). 

So, anyway, there are streets that didn't see a plow for up to five days.  The poor response is being blamed on a lot of things, among them a purposeful "slowdown" by DSNY supervisors who may have been showing their displeasure about some pay cuts.  There are reports of seeing drivers just sitting in their trucks drinking beer instead of, ya'know, plowing.  So, there's gonna be an internal probe, City Council Hearings, an investigation by the NYC Public Advocate, a State Probe, and a Federal investigation.

During the height of the storm, the city was instructing people not to call 911 unless they had a life threatening emergency.  If you were having a heart attack, the expected wait for an ambulance was nine hours!  Some big shot in charge of EMS response got shitcanned yesterday.  Somehow, I don't think that's gonna satisfy the investigators.

There were a bunch of cars destroyed by plows and some cars buried by front end loaders when they hauled the snow away.  In another place, they moved a bunch of snow to one street and piled it up so high that it toppled a fence next to a cemetery and demolished a bunch of tombstones. For some reason, some people are displeased with that.

In the meantime, garbage has continued to take a back seat, as it were. There was no pick up at all from Christmas to January 3rd.  They haven't caught up yet and they still haven't started picking up recycling yet.  Note 1: A man in Manhattan tried to commit suicide, but failed when his nine-story jump was cushioned by the pile of trash on the sidewalk.  Will Sanitation get credit for that?  Nooooo!  Note 2: It's bad enough that we've got more than 2 weeks worth of recycling piled up, but I could have lived without the people upstairs deciding it was finally time to get rid of six months or so worth of magazines...loose...just dumped in the can.  Yes, I've bundled it now, thank you very much. 

I haven't been in Manhattan since the blizzard, but I hear it's bad enough that even the power of winter hasn't been enough to control the stink. 

We're supposed to have a trash pickup tomorrow (no recycling yet), but there's also another snowstorm on the way.  We're supposed to get 5-8", which isn't really that big a deal, but I'd imagine that with all the shit DSNY and Bloomberg are taking over the last storm, even the payroll clerks are gonna be out driving plows this time.

This oughta be good.

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