Summary of Complaints about Commercial Waste Collection at Unreasonable Hours

Daniel Merriott made this Freedom of Information request to Westminster City Council

The request was partially successful.

From: Daniel Merriott

3 May 2009

Dear Sir or Madam,

I should be grateful if you could provide summary details of the
complaints provided by residents in the last 18 months about
commercial waste collection at unreasonable hours (after 11pm or
before 7am). Specifically, for each complaint could you please
include the name of the waste collection company (if established),
the date and time of the waste collection, the location (or
premises) of the waste collection, and what action Westminster
council took to investigate and/or resolve the complaint.

Yours faithfully,

Daniel Merriott

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Westminster City Council

5 May 2009

Confirmation of Freedom Of Information Request

Thank you for your request for information.

Your request details have now been recorded and will be passed on to the
appropriate Divisional Records Officer for action.

This Freedom Of Information Request was based on the following
information:

Name: Daniel Merriott
Address: see email address
Email: [FOI #11220 email]
Telephone:
Request Details: I should be grateful if you could provide summary details
of the complaints provided by residents in the last 18 months about
commercial waste collection at unreasonable hours (after 11pm or before
7am). Specifically, for each complaint could you please include the name
of the waste collection company (if established), the date and time of the
waste collection, the location (or premises) of the waste collection, and
what action Westminster council took to investigate and/or resolve the
complaint.

FOI Reference Number: 3748
Target Completion Date: 03/06/2009

Please do not reply to this email.
This is an automatic response to your request, and replies to this message
will not be actioned.

If you need to contact Westminster City Council regarding your request,
please contact:

mailto:[Westminster City Council request email]
Tel:020 7641 3921

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From: Sweeting, Edward
Westminster City Council

8 May 2009

Dear Mr Merriott,

FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 2000 - INFORMATION REQUEST 3584

Thank you for your request for information logged on the 5 May 2009 under
the above reference.

Westminster City Council does not agree with your definition of
unreasonable hours as regards to waste collections and therefore the
wording of your question makes it a little difficult to answer.
Westminster's waste collection services are active 24 hours a day
according to need and, although we do try not to schedule collections in
purely residential areas before 07.00, in some areas collections take
place throughout the night to service needs of businesses and residents
alike. Westminster is a 24 hour City which needs 24 hour services and our
services are aligned to maintaining the Council's 'Clean Streets' policy.
Complaints about Commercial Waste collections are also only likely to
occur if resident thinks there is a noise nuisance. You may wish to submit
a different question along these lines to the noise team if this is the
type of query you are after.

I am sorry I have not been able to answer your question, If you can submit
a new query and be more specific this would be very helpful.

If you have any further queries concerning this request please contact me.
If you are dissatisfied with the handling of your request please contact
the Corporate Data Protection & FOI Officer, Information Services, 16^th
Floor/City Hall, 64 Victoria Street, SW1E 6QP, alternatively please
telephone on 020 7641 8578 or email: [1][Westminster City Council request email].

Further information is also available from the Information Commissioner
at:
Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Telephone: 01625 545 700
[2]www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk
Yours sincerely,

Edward Sweeting
Business Support Officer
Department of Environment & Leisure

[FOI #11220 email]
5th May 2009
I should be grateful if you could provide summary details of the
complaints provided by residents in the last 18 months aboutcommercial
waste collection at unreasonable hours (after 11pm or before 7am).
Specifically, for each complaint could you please include the name of the
waste collection company (if established), the date and time of the waste
collection, the location (or premises) of the waste collection, and what
action Westminster council took to investigate and/or resolve the
complaint.

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References

Visible links
1. mailto:[Westminster City Council request email]%20
2. file:///\\www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk

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From: Daniel Merriott

8 May 2009

Dear Mr Sweeting,

Although you may not agree with the definition of unreasonable
hours this should not prevent you from responding to the question
as asked. Presumably residents DO complaint about waste collection
(and as you suggest, presumably residents complain about the noise
from waste collection) and when residents do complain of 'too
early' or 'too late' collections, I would also reasonably presume
that the time of the collection being complained about is logged by
Westminster Council or its agents. I would imagine that such
complains may be directed to the noise team, or to other teams
depending on how the person complaining (or the agent responding)
interpreted Westminster Council's categories for such complaints
and that a full account of such incidents would likey require
searching either a central logging system or each possibly relevant
team's logging system.

For your reference, I have based my definition of 'unreasonable
hours' from guidelines for delivery/collection found on the
Westminster website:
http://www.westminster.gov.uk/environmen...,
and Westminster Council's noise team have previously confirmed to
myself that they expect commercial waste collection activities in
predominantly residential areas to happen between 7am and 11pm
whenever possible.

Yours sincerely,

Daniel Merriott

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From: Sweeting, Edward
Westminster City Council

14 May 2009

Dear Mr Merriott,
Thank you for your further email. I have sent details of your complaint
to the noise team and will respond to you when I have the information to
answer your query.
Regards
Ed Sweeting

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From: Daniel Merriott

4 June 2009

Dear Westminster City Council

As your response is now overdue, can you kindly advise when I can
expect to receive your reply with the information requested?

Yours sincerely,
Daniel Merriott

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From: Sweeting, Edward
Westminster City Council

4 June 2009

Thank you for your email. I am currently out of the office. I am back in
on Friday 5 June 2009 and will respond to you as soon possilble on my
return. Many thanks Ed Sweeting

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From: Sweeting, Edward
Westminster City Council

5 June 2009


Attachment FOI 3748.xls
61K Download View as HTML


Dear Mr Merriott,

Re: FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 2000 -Request Reference 3748
Regarding details of the complaints provided by residents in the last 18
months about commercial waste collection at unreasonable hours (after 11pm
or before 7am).
Apologies for the delay in sending you this information, I write in
response to your email request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000
dated 5th May 2009 and confirmation of your request on the 8th May 2009
regarding the above.

Please find on the following sheets details of complaints taken from our
database. These complaints are separated out into tables according to the
address about which the complaint was made. I have included the date the
complaint was received, the detail of the complaint and the comments and
actions of the officer who dealt with the complaint.

Please note that in line with the requirements of the Data Protection Act
I have removed all personal details from the information provided.

If you have any queries do not hesitate to contact me.

Further information regarding the Freedom of Information Act 2000 is also
available from the Information Commissioner at:

Information Commissioner's Office

Wycliffe House

Water Lane

Wilmslow

Cheshire

SK9 5AF

Telephone: 01625-545-700

[1]www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk

Regards

Edward Sweeting
Business Support Officer
Department of Environment & Leisure

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From: Daniel Merriott

7 June 2009

Dear Mr Sweeting

Thank you for your response.

Unfortunately the file you sent in missing information on
complaints that I know were logged during the period I requested.
As such I consider the information received to be incomplete.

For example, I have personal knowledge of the following complaints
logged via the westminster.gov.uk website:

Date Logged Reference Noise Team Reference

28/07/2008 - SMC13576 (08/48550/ENAS);

01/08/2008 - SMC13693 (08/49831/ENAC);

16/08/2008 - SMC13993 (08/53587/ENAC);

19/08/2008 - SMC14034 (08/54416/ENAQ);

20/08/2008 - SMC14061;

20/08/2008 - SMC14062;

22/02/2009 - SMC17574;

03/05/2009 - SMC19168 (09/30552/ENAC);

I should be grateful if you could supply the complete information
requested as soon as possible.

Regards,
Daniel Merriott

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From: Sweeting, Edward
Westminster City Council

23 June 2009

Dear Mr Merriott,

FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 2000 - INFORMATION REQUEST 3748

Sorry that we have not provided a response to this enquiry, the Noise
team are currently trying to formulate a search query that will enable a
more accurate retrieval of records for this issue, it may mean that the
work required to answer your query will incur a fee charge however we
will advise you if this the case before proceeding with the work.

Regards

Ed Sweeting
Environment & Leisure Department

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From: Sweeting, Edward
Westminster City Council

1 July 2009


Attachment FOI 3748.xls
197K Download View as HTML

Attachment Calculating Fees Proforma.doc
148K Download View as HTML


Dear Mr Merriott,

Re: FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 2000 - REQUEST REFERENCE 3748

Apoligies for the delay in responding to you in full regarding the below.
Following your comments the Noise Team have now run new queries searching
a number of other fields for key words in the database of noise
complaints. This has retrieved a number of other records in the attached
spreadsheet.

There are 23,006 noise records for the period requested and any further
searching of this database for the information will be need to be done
manually. Around 20 hours of work in total on this has already been
carried out on this request and therefore any more work will incur a fees
notice. The Noise team have compiled the attached fees notice estimate for
the work involved.

If you have any further queries concerning this request please contact me.
If you are dissatisfied with the handling of your request please contact
the Corporate Data Protection & FOI Officer, Information Services, 16^th
Floor/City Hall, 64 Victoria Street, SW1E 6QP, alternatively please
telephone on 020 7641 8578 or email: ^[1][Westminster City Council request email]^.

Further information is also available from the Information Commissioner
at:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Telephone: 01625 545 700
^[2]www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk

Yours sincerely,

Edward Sweeting
Business Support Officer
Department of Environment & Leisure

show quoted sections

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From: Daniel Merriott

14 July 2009

Dear Mr Sweeting,

Many thanks for following up on this. I will work with the
information you have been able to provide, and will not be
requesting further effort.

Yours sincerely,
Daniel Merriott

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From: Daniel Merriott

14 July 2009

Dear Mr Sweeting,

Many thanks for following up on this. I will work with the
information you have been able to provide, and will not be
requesting further effort.

Yours sincerely,
Daniel Merriott

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william perrin left an annotation (24 August 2010)

Quote-marks hiya - Thanks for this request it has helped me formulate a similar one to islington asking for the locaiton of all noise complaints, commercial and domestic

As an experiment i have imported the data into google maps via the google fusion tables service - you can see a map at this link

http://tables.googlelabs.com/DataSource?...

I tidied the data a little by making sure that each location entry had the word 'london' at the end of it.

i am not a coder and am experimenting with fusion to see if a complete klutz can make a map from a spreadsheet.

let me know if this is helpful

cheers

w

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Londoner2 left an annotation (27 November 2011)

Quote-marks I have been trying for over a year to get the times of private waste collections from commercial premises changed to before 11pm, as the waste collection vehicles are collecting in a residential area (unnecessarily) and rat-running through the residential side streets. When Westminster council carried out a one-off 1pm collection from a commercial premises, the response from the waste collections manager for the area was similar to the attitude of Mr Sweeting. Even worse than the waste collections are the hourly drives-by of the mechanised pavement sweepers, over 70dB for ten to twenty minutes on each run. A horrendous howling roar only modulated by the doppler effect. Efforts to stop some of the night runs between 2am and 6am have failed. If this was noise from commercial premises it would be dealt with by the noise teams, but Westminster council does not practice what it preaches.

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