Residential Garbage Roll-Out Containers

Informational Flyer

Frequently Asked Questions

Why did we switch to roll-out containers?

Automated collection is a faster, safer service that requires fewer workers and vehicles than the hand-loading of solid waste. Automated vehicles can only pick up City-issued roll-out containers.

Do I have to buy a roll-out container?

No, containers were provided to each residence in Emmetsburg.

What if I live in a multifamily complex?

Roll-out containers did not replace existing dumpsters. For multifamily housing without a dumpster, each unit/address received a roll-out container unless other arrangements were made with the property owner.

When do I start using the new roll-out container?

The City will began using the new automated garbage truck to collect waste in roll-out containers the week of December 4.

Will my route/collection day change?

Daily garbage collection routes will remain the same for the time being. As the process becomes more efficient, the city may combine routes. The public will be kept informed about any future changes.

Will my bill go up?

No, roll-out containers will not change your billing amount. The City of Emmetsburg evaluates and adjusts solid waste rates annually based on landfill fees.

Will I receive a container for recycling?

No. The City contracts with Shamrock Recycling for recycling pickup. The garbage roll-outs will have no effect on the existing recycling pickup method or schedule.

Where do I place my container?

  1. Containers should face the street. Text and arrows on lid show which side should face the street.
  2. Place the container within two feet of the street (not on the street).
    In the winter months, place the container as close to the street as snow will allow. 
  3. In order to reach out and grasp each container, the truck’s hydraulic arm needs a minimum clearance of five feet from all objects such as parked cars, trees, mailboxes, fences, etc.
  4. Allow at least three feet of space between each container.
  5. Place containers on a hard surfaced area. A hard surface could be gravel, pavers, concrete, or if necessary a grass area. The roll-outs can be placed on grass as long as it isn’t a muddy area or an area where the container could freeze to the ground.
  6. Position the container on as level of a surface as possible.

When do I put out my roll-out container?

Please have your container at the curb by 7:00 a.m. on your collection day. Containers may be placed curbside up to 12 hours before scheduled collection and must be removed within 8 hours after collection. We understand some individuals get home from work/activities later. Simply put the container away when you return home. Containers can’t be left out for an extended amount of time (several nights).

How much can I put in my roll-out container?

Contents must weigh less than 100 pounds, and all waste material must fit loosely within the container. Lids must be securely closed to ensure litter is not blown in your neighborhood. Do not put items on top of the lid. Garbage outside of the container will not be picked up without an additional garbage tag.

What if I have extra garbage or it didn’t fit in the container?

Additional garbage tags may be purchased at City Hall for garbage beyond what fits into the container on a normal garbage day. Prior arrangements must be made for pickup.

What if I have physical difficulty taking my roll-out container to the curb?

Roll-out containers can be collected from the garage or front of property for qualifying disabled individuals. Call City Hall at 712-852-4030 for details.

What happens if my container blows away/is missing?

Each container has a serial number and is assigned to a specific address. If a container is blown away during a storm, the city will be able to check its serial number and return it to its designated address. Call City Hall at 712-852-4030 to report a missing container.

What happens if my container is damaged?

Containers are property of the City of Emmetsburg. The City will repair normal wear and tear. Lost or damaged containers due to neglect/misuse will be repaired or replaced at the expense of the property owner/user.

Do I take the container with me if I move?

No. Each container will stay at its designated address. Please leave the roll-out container in the rear yard or garage of the residence when you move.

What do I do if my container is dirty or smelly?

The roll-off can be hosed off and/or bleached. The user is responsible for maintaining the container for cleanliness.

What items are prohibited?

Brown goods (consumer electronics), hazardous waste, toxic chemicals, yard waste, and hot/burning coals and embers are prohibited. The City of Emmetsburg has the right to reject any items put out for collection.

Can I throw away electronics?

No. Portable and semi-portable electric appliances or devices including, but not limited to the following are prohibited: computers, computer equipment, stereos, radios, televisions, digital media players, fax machines, kitchen appliances, heating and cooling equipment. The City of Emmetsburg works with Shamrock Recycling to offer e-waste recycling each spring.

Can I throw away yard waste?

No. yard waste such as grass clippings, leaves, garden waste, brush, and trees/branches can’t be co-mingled or collected with regular solid waste. Yard waste may be taken to the Palo Alto County Transfer Station.

What do I do with household hazardous waste?

Hazardous waste or toxic chemicals include but are not limited to aerosols, paint and primer, paint thinner or strippers, propane tanks gasoline, diesel, fuel, motor oil, car batteries, lithium batteries, household cleaners, pesticides, herbicides, and insecticides. Items may be taken to the Household Hazardous Waste Collection Center located at the Palo Alto County Transfer Station. Call 712-852-2482 to learn more about what types of household hazardous waste projects are accepted at the facility.