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Tonnes of Garbage pile up in Athens as Attica landfill remains close

Garbage bags outside the large neighborhood bins have been piling up in Athens, Piraeus and the suburbs as the landfill of Attica remains close for eighth consecutive day. With 2,000 tonnes fresh rubbish to land daily on the streets, residents and business owners in the Greek capital have reached the limits of their patience.

While in our street, for example, the garbage is being collected every other day, in other areas of the neighborhood the bins are overloaded and small or big bags have being simply left next to the bins.

On Monday, the heavy rainstorm swept away dozens of plastic bags full with smelly trash.

The problem arose after a crack appeared on the ground of the new part of the sole landfill in Attica basin. The landfill XYTA in Fyli, West Athens, had to be largely closed and drastically limit the deposit of fresh garbage.

From the 5,000 tonnes of garbage daily produced in Attica, only 2,500-3,000 are been collected and land in XYTA these days.

According to officials from Athens Municipality,  with the landfill practically closed, only 20 garbage trucks collect rubbish. The daily need is at 120-150 trucks in order to collect the 800 tonnes produced in the area of the municipality on daily basis. XYTA allows only two trucks per municipality from the 66 municipalities of Attica in total.

The collection of garbage in the greater Athens area will be delayed “for a short time” still until the problem is repaired, authorities said on Monday.

Afroditi Biza, vice president of the agency that manages the site (EDSNA), told state news agency amna, that “the operation of the Fyli landfill is returning to normalcy gradually.”

She said the agency’s priority was the safety and health of workers and the effective repair of the problem. A contractor is stabilizing the ground, Biza said, but the full operation of the site and the collection of garbage will need a few more days.

Until the problem is completely solved, authorities urge citizens to keep their garbage in the balconies or inside their homes, to avoid unpleasant situations and risks for public safety.

It is estimated that 15,000 tonnes of garbage are currently on the streets these days.

I have received reports by KTG readers that the situation is especially bad in some suburbs of Piraeus.

The pictures shot after the rain in Keratsini on Sunday were sent by KTG reader D.E.

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