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Atlanta experiencing trash collection delays amid COVID-19 staffing shortages

The city's COVID surge is causing staffing shortages.

ATLANTA — People in Atlanta might see their trash and recycling sitting out longer than they would like. 

The city's public works department said the surge in Atlanta's COVID-19 cases is causing staffing shortages and creating some collection delays. On Wednesday, the state of Georgia set a new single-day record for new COVID cases since the start of the pandemic — reporting 19,124 new COVID cases, including both PCR and antigen tests. 

According to data from the Department of Public Health, average daily case numbers are up 694% since Thanksgiving and have tripled in just one week's time. 

In a statement on the city's website, the department said trash is the top priority, and crews are working throughout the evenings to try and collect the waste.

Recycling, however, will have to wait. Those bins will be picked up once all trash routes are finished, the department said.  

Here's the full statement from public works:

Due to the recent surge in COVID-19 cases which ahs led to a decrease in staffing, the Department of Public Works Office of Solid Waste Services is experiencing collection delays across the city.

Crews are out and will continue to work into the evening. Residents impacted by the service delays should leave carts and bagged items curbside and visit www.atl331.com or call 3-1-1 or (404) 546-0311 to report any missed collections.