Ottawa Hills residents don't have to worry about straining their backs or slipping on icy driveways in the winter while wrestling garbage to the curb on trash collection days.
Their waste collection service is one of the last in the area that provides for pickup at the rear of the home.
A $12,000 grant approved this week by Lucas County commissioners will reduce the chance of a slip or a strain on the part of those bringing the trash to the street for collection.
Village Administrator Marc Thompson said he intends to buy a vehicle, or maybe two used vehicles, that collectors can use to drive to the trash and return with it to the garbage truck in the street.
Rear-of-the-house collection has always been the practice in Ottawa Hills, Mr. Thompson said.
The vehicles he has in mind are small with beds, which can tilt and dump trash into the compacting truck. Collectors use a large container on a wheeled cart, “and the trouble can come in when the container gets heavy and they have to lift it into the compactor,'' he said.
“This is a pilot program and we're hoping that it will both increase efficiency and more importantly add a degree of safety for our employees.''
The grant is through the county's Solid Waste Management District.
Funds come from a $3-per-ton fee that is collected at all area landfills and is returned to the district for grants for municipal waste-collection programs.
Mr. Thompson said last year the village dumped 1,590 tons in a landfill, resulting in fees of $4,770. This is the first grant awarded to the village from the solid waste district.