With all the wrapping paper and food thrown away this holiday season, the trash collectors in Sioux Falls will have a heavy workload ahead of them.
From Christmas to New Years Day, the trash left for workers in Sioux Falls will be much greater than any other time of the year, but there are steps that people can do to make the difficult job a little easier.
"The garbage goes up quite a bit, but the recycling also goes up, so we kind of get hit on both ends. Makes for a very busy week and there is a lot of food waste because people get together and you might have ten to 15 people in a household or whatever," trash collector Johnn Cressman said.
Due to a city mandate, trash collectors aren't allowed to start earlier to get a start on the extra workload. Cressman estimates the day after Christmas he will work two to three hours more than usual. The large amount of trash doesn't end that day either.
"It's not so much maybe the week after but you'll see like a couple weeks after they'll kind of go through and they're looking for a place to put all their new toys. There's no where to put it so they must clean out. After the holidays the trash, it's about a good month before it goes back to normal," Cressman said.
While there is a lot for workers to pick up, people can help ease some of that holiday stress.
"Using instead of real small bags, put everything in maybe a construction grate bag and then tie it. So that way you know if it's up by the house and we're going multiple trips up and down the driveway, especially if we get a little weather and gets icy out. Keeping everything neat and neat as neat and tidy as you can garbage I guess," Cressman said.
Cressman says he does sometimes get baked goods, gift cards and sometimes cash from his customers as a way of saying thank you, and that makes the holidays very special to him.