Department of Public Utilities

Street Sweeping & Litter Control

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Street Sweeping & Litter Control

Keeping the roadway in front of your house free of large objects and obstructions is the best way to assist street sweeping. Large sticks, branches and pine needles can clog and jam the sweepers’ operating systems.

During the winter months the focus of the City’s street sweeping efforts is leaf removal to help keep drains clear. To better assist sweepers, do not rake, blow or pile up leaves in the gutter of the street; doing so is considered illegal dumping. The sweeper cannot pick up large loads. Please place leaves from your trees in your green solid waste container.

In addition to cleaner streets, frequent street sweeping on a regular neighborhood schedule keeps waste materials from getting into storm drains. As a community, Fresno is being proactive in catching debris before it affects the storm or agricultural water quality. Cleaner storm drains flood less and improve public safety.

Be sure to keep a safe distance between you and the sweeper at all times. Try to avoid maneuvering around sweeper trucks; move off to the side of the road until you are sure it is safe to continue. Keep children a safe distance from the sweepers. Do not ride, run or play near the trucks.

  • Residential areas are swept once every month.
  • Residents are asked to move motor homes and cars off the street on their scheduled day, between 6:00 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.
  • Arterial streets are swept once per week at night.

The City of Fresno has eleven full-time street sweeper operators: Six working residential neighborhoods, during the hours 6:00 a.m.–2:30 p.m. Five working on the arterial streets during the night, 10:00 p.m.–6:30 a.m.

The Streets Division operates mechanical street sweepers. The brooms of mechanical sweepers flick debris onto an elevator shaft and into a debris hopper. Our sweepers also spray small amounts of water for dust control purposes. Mechanical sweepers are not designed to wash a street; they are designed to pick up trash and debris. The mechanical sweepers tend to pick up larger pieces of debris and they tend to be quieter than a vacuum sweeper.

Missed Service
There are many reasons why the sweeper may not have been able to remove debris from your street. Most often, it’s because items such as cars, bicycles, toys, basketball hoops and refuse containers are blocking the roadway. Vehicles parked too close to each other for the sweeper to maneuver between them are another cause. Low hanging trees and shrubs can prevent sweepers from cleaning in front of your home as well.

Litter Control

The tasks include litter removal from areas such as Downtown and Chinatown, assisting street sweeping by hand sweeping areas where mechanical sweepers cannot sweep (e.g. corner drain inlets), and litter removal along the local freeways and major arteries.

The program’s workforce is augmented by utilizing labor from Community Service Workers and volunteers like you.

Why do people litter?

  • They feel no sense of ownership or pride in their neighborhood or community
  • Litter has already accumulated in a spot, and “no one will notice another piece of litter there.”
  • Lack of convenient trash and recycling cans, or unwillingness to use available trash cans.
  • For some smokers, it has become an “accepted norm” to throw used cigarettes butts on the ground.
  • Litter takes a LONG time to biodegrade. Please DO NOT Litter.

What can I do to help?

  • Set an example for others by not littering
  • Carry a litterbag in your car
  • Securely cover trash containers to prevent wind or animals from spreading litter
  • Cover and secure any vehicle, truck or trailer to prevent trash from blowing
  • Volunteer ONE TEAM…ONE EFFORT!
  • Organize a clean up in your neighborhood. Need some help? Call (559) 621-1452.