Refuse collectors empty out bins and take rubbish away from homes and workplaces. They work as a team and travel around in a special lorry. One member of the team drives the lorry while the others collect the bins. Refuse collectors load the bins onto a lift. This tips the rubbish into the back of the lorry. There is a machine in the lorry that crushes the rubbish.
- Collecting rubbish from homes and businesses
- Loading rubbish into a refuse lorry
- Picking up any rubbish that falls onto the street
- Checking that people have put the right kind of waste into recycling bins
- Driving the refuse lorry
- Collecting large items of rubbish, such as furniture
Local councils employ the refuse collectors.
Refuse collectors spend most of their day out of doors and have to work in all sorts of weather. The rubbish they collect can be very smelly.
Refuse collectors usually work around 37 hours a week. They may have to start at 6am, but they finish in the early afternoon. Most work from Monday to Friday, but some may need to do overtime or work some weekends.
Starting Salary – £15,000.
You do not need set qualifications from school to become a refuse collector.
The majority of people employed in this role may not have formal qualifications or will hold GCSEs below Grade 4 (D-G).
You could also apply for an apprenticeship. If you have an EHCP you may be able to apply under the DfE exemption which allows the apprentice to use Entry Level 3 English and Maths qualifications. The apprentice would have to be competent enough to successfully achieve all other aspects of the apprenticeship requirements, become occupationally competent and achieve Entry Level 3 in English and Maths before the end of their apprenticeship.