Don’t Get Left Behind – “Why wasn’t my cart collected?”

July 2, 2019

Has this ever happened to you? You hear the big, shiny Loraas truck go by collecting all the carts in your neighbourhood. You go out to the street to collect your cart and bring it back onto your property and realize, “My cart wasn’t emptied!” Ugh! We understand this can be super frustrating. Like many other services available to the public, there are several rules that need to be followed for appropriate business exchanges.

Don’t want to get left behind again? Loraas is here to help. We’ve compiled a list of the most common mistakes on why your cart may not have been collected. Have you ever:

  • Placed your cart too close to obstructions?

The most common reason for a cart not being picked up is because it was not placed far enough from obstructions. In order to ensure we don’t damage other’s property, our collection trucks need at least 4 feet (1.2 meters) of space between the blue, black, or green carts or other objects like cars.

The Solution: If your cart is placed between two vehicles, simply roll it out further away from the curb so the mechanical arm can reach without damaging surrounding objects. Another solution is to place your cart on the opposite side of the street where there is more room. If these two solutions do not work, you may have to talk to your neighbours to ensure the carts are placed with enough accessible space to be collected and/or vehicles are parked a short distance away.

  • Unsure of what direction to face the cart?

Similar to the previous case, we require that you face the wheels of your cart towards the curb. This is important for the mechanical arm that empties your waste into a Loraas truck. If the cart is facing the wrong way, the trucks cannot grab onto the carts to collect. What about snow if there are snow banks blocking you from placing your cart at the curb? Simply place your cart as close to the curb as possible.

  • Filled your cart so full you could not close the lid?

The most common mistake is having carts with far too much contents leaving the lids wide open or partially open. We love to hear that you’re enjoying using your carts, however, our drivers have been advised not to pick-up these carts as they have a high risk for litter contamination.

The Solution: For recyclables, the easiest thing to resolve this issue is to flatten or break down large cardboard and plastics #1 to #7 to 2ft x 2ft (60cm x 60cm).  Another option is to take excess recycling to one of the many drop-off depots including Loraas’ public drop-off located at 1902 1st Avenue North; open 24/7 to the public.

For overflowing garbage, you may have to re-evaluate if that “garbage” can be recycled or diverted from the landfill instead of being thrown away. Visit to see different recycling or diversion programs in your community.

  • Accidentally mixed up your pickup day?

Sometimes pickup schedules or frequency change throughout the year. It could be possible you placed your cart out on the wrong day or put the wrong cart out for collection.

The Solution: Double check your pickup schedule. For rural Loraas customers, visit our website and print off your community’s Collection Calendar or call our Client Service number at (306) 242-2300. If you’re a City of Saskatoon resident, you can download the electronic collection calendar at or get text reminders using their handy waste app. Lastly, create simple reminder prompts. Place a coloured dot on your calendar to represent specific collection days.

  • Do you live at the end of a cul-de-sac?

If yes, there are different rules for your curbside pickup. All carts are to be placed 16 feet (4.8 meters) from the furthest endpoint of the cul-de-sac so vehicles, including our trucks, have enough room to continue driving. Carts are to be placed in a straight line all facing the same direction and placed at least 4 feet (1.2 meters) apart.

The Solution: Get neighbourly! By that, we mean simply talking to your neighbours to confirm everyone understands and participates so you don’t get missed.

  • Slept in past 7:00 AM and placed your cart out at a different time in the morning?

Residential curbside pickup commences at 7:00 A.M. sharp. Please have your cart at the curb by this time regardless of if your driver typically comes at different times throughout the day. Pickup times may vary depending on different drivers or how many drivers are available that day. Reminder to pull your cart back onto your property by 7:00 PM.

The Solution: If early mornings are problematic, place your cart at the curb late evening to avoid being missed. Going on a holiday? Ask your friendly neighbour to give you assistance, take your waste to the landfill, or take organics to a drop-off depot before you jet off.

  • Where items left in your cart after pickup?

We love all of our avid recyclers and promote using the cart as much as possible. However, during certain times of the year, you may have excess recyclables (or other waste). Packing too many items in your cart may make it difficult to empty it completely. Or if items are still wet from rinsing, they could freeze to the sides of the cart during cold weather.

The Solution: Instead of using your foot to pack as much into the carts as possible, we welcome you to use the many free recycling depots across the City. Also, allow your recyclables to fully dry before placing them into the cart.

  • Placed an item in your blue or green carts, but were not 100% sure it belonged?

Lots of residents are what we like to call “Wish-cyclers”.  Not all recyclables or items with the recycling symbol are accepted in our curbside program. The same goes with items labeled organic, biodegradable, and compostable. If too many non-acceptable items, especially hazardous or items with warning labels are identified in your cart, our drivers are advised not to pick them up to protect workers in the waste and recycling industry.

The Solution: Give us a call. Drivers have likely advised our customer care team why your cart was not collected. Our knowledgable team will able to assist you or give you further education. Still unsure? Visit the ‘What can be recycled?’ section of the website to understand how to use the programs correctly, download and print off help guidelines, or watch our simple videos. Or use one of the recycling search engines online, like SWRC or the Waste Wizard to, “…know before your throw!”

Loraas’ disposal and waste diversion programs are incredibly efficient processes, but only if used correctly. We are continually looking towards creating a cleaner and better future for the next generations and diverting unnecessary or recyclable waste from our landfills. For the most up to date information, make sure to follow our social media @LoraasYXE for messaging about storms, missed areas, cart tips, and more. Thank you for your continued participation and with this new information, you’ll never be left behind again!

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