A FIFE COUNCIL driver has blasted a decision to base recycling lorries in Glenrothes even though they spend most of the day in West Fife.

The employee, who did not want to be named, said the vehicles, which take waste from recycling centres to landfill sites, are now having to travel unnecessary distances, which he says is bad for fuel costs at a time when the local authority is trying to cut its budget.

He and his colleagues previously had their vehicles based at Elgin Street before a move to Lochhead Landfill site but they are now having to travel to and from the Bankhead depot at the beginning and end of their working day to pick up and drop off the lorries.

“We are paying the fuel for our cars coming from home to Glenrothes and home again when we are picking the lorry up to go all the way back through to Dunfermline to the service centre then back up again at the end of the day just because one person thought it was a good idea,” said the disgruntled member of staff.

“It is costing a fortune. It is adding on hours to our day and we aren’t getting back until 7pm. No-one understands why we have been moved. It is a cost to the council that is not needed.

“We move the boxes from the recycling sites and take them to landfill. I am putting in almost 600 litres in my days now – when they were in Dunfermline, it was 200 litres. It just doesn’t make any sense.

“They have just decided that is what we will do. It is impossible but they won’t back down.”

Robin Baird, chief operating officer of RES, said they had a responsibility to make sure they were making the best use of the public money available to operate the business.

“In doing this we have made a number of changes,” he said. “Since making these changes, we are already starting to see significant savings on fleet costs.

"The sites in question are landfill sites and we move boxes from all over Fife to these sites. This is not just about a move from one site to another; this is about the movement of all the vehicles, not just a few, to make efficiencies.

“We have a number of systems in place where employees are encouraged to share their views and make suggestions on where they think improvements can be made. I’d encourage anyone with concerns to raise them with us.”