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Snow melt reveals a heaping problem

Now that the city’s 20 inches of snow is turning to slush, New Yorkers are facing heaping piles of something even worse: trash. Stinking, dirty mounds of it, some towering higher than parked cars.

Now that the city’s 20 inches of snow is turning to slush, New Yorkers are facing heaping piles of something even worse: trash. Stinking, dirty mounds of it, some towering higher than parked cars.

It’s the latest sizable problem facing the Department of Sanitation, which has been under fire for its ultra-slow response in plowing streets throughout the five boroughs last week.

“Nasty!” said Kelly Newton, 28, as she walked past garbage buildup on Jane Street. “It’s disgusting. It’s not acceptable.”

The last time the Sanitation Department picked up trash was Dec. 24, before snow cleanup took priority. But trash buildup is just more fallout from some workers who deliberately dragged their feet on snow removal, said Queens Councilman Dan Halloran.

“It’s a domino effect,” he told Metro. “You delay plowing the streets, and now you are trying to clean up what remains of snow and collect trash at the same time.

“Now it’s trash that’s piling up and it’s thawing out; decomposition is starting,” Halloran added. “It’s a sanitary issue.”

Crews will resume collecting trash today, but only in a “limited” capacity, according to the Sanitation Department. A DOS spokesman said "limited" refers to removal of trash only, and not recycled items. The latter are not being collected until further notice.

“It’s terrible — I have trash all piled up in the front of my building,” said West Village resident David Lees, 47. “I don’t understand: It was snow, not a nuclear fallout.”

‘If you miss a street, don’t worry about it’

According to Councilman Dan Halloran, three sanitation workers confessed to him that their supervisors told them to intentionally go easy on snow plowing.

“They said they were told they wouldn’t be checked up on; they should take their time, not overextend themselves,” said Halloran. “If they miss a street or a grid, don’t worry about it — they won’t get in trouble.”

It’s retaliation for budget cuts, said Halloran. “The sanitation workers said City Hall doesn’t care about us, so why are we going to bust our chops for them?”

A 9-floor plunge

A huge pile of trash outside his building miraculously cushioned a would-be suicide jumper’s nine-story fall yesterday. The man, in his 30s, jumped from the ninth floor of his apartment at W. 45th St. just after noon, according to police. The man landed on his back in a heap of black trash bags and survived.

 
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