Smart bins trial launches in Wandsworth

Published: Friday, April 5, 2019

Wandsworth Council is trialling smart bin technology to help keep the borough’s streets clean.

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Tommy Griffith, PEL UK, talking to Councillor Steffi Sutters about how the new smart bin technology will monitor waste levels in real time

Bins at 11 locations across Wandsworth have been replaced with smart bins, fitted with a sensor that alerts the council’s waste team, in real time, when the bins are full. This means collection teams can focus on ones that need emptying.

The new bins make use of the Internet of things technology, increasingly used to connect everyday objects to the internet and help cities to provide better and more efficient public services.

The bins have been installed on the council's behalf by PEL UK, who supply councils with waste reduction equipment, at the following locations,

  • Thessaly Road SW8, one bin
  • Lytton Grove SW15, one bin
  • Putney Heath SW15, one bin
  • Nickols Walk SW18, two bins
  • Lombard Road SW11, two bins  
  • Deodar Road SW15, two bins
  • Orbel Street SW11, one bin
  • Church Lane SW17, one bin

If the 12-month long pilot project is successful, it will help ensure Wandsworth’s bins are emptied more efficiently.

The council’s environment spokesman Cllr Steffi Sutters said:

“We are always looking at new ways to improve our services; this new initiative is welcome because it helps us keep Wandsworth's streets clean and tidy, something that residents have told us it is a key priority for them.  

“I’m especially excited by the opportunities that new technology brings; smart bins are just one of the many ways in which we can embrace the Internet of things to our borough’s advantage.

“Monitoring rubbish levels in our bins, in real time, will help us deliver a better service, reduce litter and help create an environment where residents are proud to live.”

“I look forward to keeping residents updated during the course of this trial.”

The council spends around £4m a year on its street cleaning service – all streets are swept at least once a week and busier streets are swept up to five times a day.  There is also a rapid response team dealing with issues such as flytips, dead animals and broken glass.

Alongside this, the Council will continue to fine litterbugs, and prosecute the most serious flytippers.

Between April 2017 and March 2019 more than 11,200 fines were issued for littering and flytipping offences.

The trial is part of a range of measures being taken by the council to reduce litter and flytipping. It is planning to trial special bins that recycle chewing gum, and has launched the #MyWandsworth campaign to send a clear message that flytipping is unacceptable.

Residents can get involved with the campaign, and do their bit to help keep the borough clean and tidy. They can:

  • Report flytip offenders
  • Join the Wandsworth Plog; a community clean up with a difference. Run, walk or jog, while picking up litter. Saturday 8 June, 1-3pm, King George’s Park, Wandsworth. Register online www.plogolution.com/
  • Support the campaign by changing their profile picture on social media and showing their pride in the local area.
One of 11 new smart bins, being installed at Nickols Walk, Wandsworth as part of the new trial.