Inclement Weather Service Interruptions

Answers to frequently asked questions about interruptions to garbage and recycling collection in Washington County as a result of snow, wind and ice storms

In the event of severe winter weather, garbage and recycling collection schedules may be impacted. If schools are closed, solid waste (garbage) and recycling (including yard debris) collection may be canceled. For most, collection will be made up the following day.

If adverse weather conditions last for more than one day (schools continue to be closed), garbage and recycling will be picked up on the next regularly scheduled collection day. For the next pick up, customers should place their materials from the previous week at the curb. There will be no extra charge for materials up to twice the subscribed service.

Contact your hauler with questions about collection schedules during inclement weather. If your property resides within a city limits, contact your city office or hauler for instructions.


Questions and Answers about Interrupted Service

Q:  My garbage and recycling volumes have doubled since my regular pick-up was missed. What should I do with the extras?  

A: Extra Garbage - You can place your 'extras' (garbage) at the curb for the next scheduled pick-up and there will be no additional charge for the extra material (up to twice your subscribed service). If there is not enough room in your containers, place your garbage in a plastic bag next to your garbage can.             

A: Extra Recycling - If you have more recyclable materials than your cart will hold, we recommend storing it and gradually adding it over the following weeks, until it is gone. This keeps the material dry and makes it more valuable as a recycling commodity.   

If you can't store it, please prepare your recycling as you would for regular collection. Recyclable material that does not fit in containers (because the container is full) can be set beside the container as long as it is properly prepared and set out on the scheduled pick up day.  


Q: Will I be charged for these extra bags I place at the curb?

A: No. Your bill will not reflect any extra charges.   


Q: Will I receive a credit for the day(s) my collection service was missed?

A: No. Because your garbage and recycling will still be collected, no credit will be issued by your hauler.  We recognize that it's inconvenient to have your collection delayed, waiting for the weather to clear to make it safe for the collection trucks to get back on the road. However, the haulers typically incur extra costs to pick up garbage in the aftermath of a storm. Rather than giving a credit for missed days, then charging customers for the "extras" that are set out, the County's policy is to have the haulers pick up all the garbage and recycling that was missed at no additional charge to the customer.  


Q: Should I worry about storing my garbage for more than the typical week? 

A: Storing garbage during a cold weather/snow event does not typically create a nuisance because materials are under cold storage (whether stored in the garage or outside).    


Frozen Yard Debris
In very cold weather conditions yard debris often freezes in the cart. This makes it difficult, if not impossible, for the hauler to empty the cart into the collection truck. This is not a common occurrence, but it has been known to happen in severely cold weather where the carts are outside.

Note: Recycling and Yard Debris is collected every-other-week.


Washington County Inclement Weather PolicySnow Shovel
(Interruption of collection service)

Storm debris collection and disposal

Office of Consolidated Emergency Management 


Washington County Garbage and Recycling Service Interruption Scenario Information Sheets:

FAQ - Snow or Ice Weather Event format-pdf
FAQ- Severe Weather or Wind Event format-pdf 
FAQ - Flood Event format-pdf