Playgrounds and recycling – what’s the latest



30 March 2020 

Rotorua Lakes Council is asking residents to follow the Government’s instructions and keep off playgrounds to help stop the spread of COVID-19. 

Last week staff and contractors taped off and placed signage at playgrounds across the district, as a visual reminder that playgrounds are a ‘no-go’ zone during the Alert Level 4 isolation period. The closure of playgrounds is due to the potential to spread the COVID-19 through touching of surfaces where the virus can live for a number of days. 

During the weekend Council received a number of calls about people ignoring the restrictions and removing tape from around playgrounds, meaning contractors will now have to go and re-tape these areas. 

Council’s Operations Group Manager Jocelyn Mikaere is reminding the community of the seriousness of listening to Government advice. 

“It is extremely disappointing to hear that people are still using playground equipment despite a very clear message they should not be doing so due to the risk of spread this poses.

“We shouldn’t have to keep replacing tape and putting contractors who do this work on our behalf at additional risk.” 

Council will re-tape these areas where it has been removed but if the behaviour continues it will review whether it will continue to send contractors out. 

If you see people on playgrounds and ignoring the restrictions contact the police on its 105 service. 

Police are enforcing the lockdown restrictions and reports of breaches can be made at .

“Please, do as you are asked. Stay off the playgrounds to reduce the spread of the virus. Don’t put yourselves, your families and others at risk,” says Ms Mikaere. 

Rubbish and recycling services 

Last week waste management industry representatives from across New Zealand met with the Government to discuss how the country would deal with managing rubbish and recycling within our communities. The directive from the Government was to close recycling facilities to help stop the spread of COVID-19. 

Moving into another week of the Alert Level 4 isolation period Rotorua residents can rest assured that solid waste services will continue. 

Both rubbish and recycling bins will be collected as normal. However, due to the health and safety risks of spreading COVID-19 at sorting centres, recycling will be collected along with general waste and transported to landfill. 

If residents prefer, they can stockpile their recycling until sorting centres reopen. Smart Environmental has asked that people who choose to do so make sure the recycling is cleaned thoroughly and is kept in a dry place. 

Other ways to help kerbside collections run smoothly: 

  • Make sure your bin lids are closed. 
  • Make sure cars are parked in driveways or away from bins 
  • Do not overfill your bins or glass crates 
  • Do not approach collection staff 

To keep the community safe staff will not be exiting their trucks to remedy these issues. To ensure your bins are emptied follow these instructions. 

Click here more infomation about Rotorua Lakes Council's response to COVID-19 

Visit the Government's website to learn more about COVID-19 here 

Page reviewed: 30 Mar 2020 2:00pm