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During bulk collection, the crews manually place the bulk material in the rearloader in a way that will not damage the packing mechanisms in the truck. In the automated trucks, this is not possible and metals get hung in the packing mechanism and damage the truck. The repairs to the vehicles due to this kind of damage are very expensive.
Cardboard boxes, while not metal or made from a hard material, present their own unique problem. Boxes placed in the container act as a wedge that will not allow the bags to pass through. When the arm squeezes the container, it has to squeeze hard enough to maintain the grip up and over to the hopper. During this procedure, the arms squeeze around the cardboard and hence the wedge. This can even happen with large pizza boxes. In the summer, the wedging is more frequent due to the plastic makeup of the container and the heat from the sun. The containers are more pliable due to heat.
There are many benefits to bagging. The number one benefit is that the neighborhoods and/or streets are cleaner without loose trash blowing around. Drivers will get out and collect bagged trash that may fall out of the container during collection. If the container has loose trash that falls out of the container, the driver is not required to collect it.
During inclement weather, some areas of Roanoke County can only be serviced manually by smaller pickup trucks. Having the trash in bags allows your trash to be picked up in a timely manner.
Bagging trash helps to keep Roanoke County cleaner for all of us to enjoy.