A social media storm erupted on Monday evening when the City of Armadale published a confusing announcement that sounded as if it had made a split decision to ban trailers from its landfill site, “effective January 23”.
The announcement directed residents to use the Cockburn or EMRC (Bayswater) transfer stations.
The original post went viral within hours, with community groups from Keysbrook to Kelmscott sharing the information, and many calling for a refund of rates.
On Tuesday the city went into damage control mode, deleting the post and issuing a correction:
“Last night (Jan 22) we incorrectly posted about changes to unsorted tipping area restrictions at our landfill. This post included incorrect information and was deleted as soon as the error was discovered,” it read.
“We apologise for the misunderstanding and confusion caused.
“Please be advised that it’s business as usual at our landfill for all customers with trailers (including tipping trailers). You will need to unload your trailer on the platform (as per normal) with either sorted or unsorted options into the bins provided.
“Customers with small tipping trucks will not be able to access the landfill tipping face due to operational restrictions (ongoing works). You will need to unload your trailer on the platform.
“If you have any questions, please contact our Waste Team at email@example.com or on 9394 5000.
“Again, we apologise for the confusion caused.”
Many on social media were not buying the explanation, calling it ‘the quickest backpedal’ in history and The Examiner asked for further clarification.
“For quite some time, customers have not been allowed to access the landfill tipping face due to operational restrictions and to safeguard them. The site has a transfer station platform where visitors can safely unload sorted or unsorted loads including those visitors with trailers/self-tipping trucks,” City of Armadale CEO Joanne Abbiss said.
“The post on Facebook was intended to remind all visitors that they are not allowed to access the landfill tipping face with trailers due to operational restrictions. Only authorised City contractors have access to the tipping face.
“Unfortunately, the announcement gave the impression that trailers would not be able to access the landfill site at all, which is incorrect.
“This was a genuine mistake…the mistake was publicly acknowledged, and the correct information presented, as well as the contact information for the Waste Team to answer any queries. As this was an apology post, the comments were left on so the city could stay engaged with the conversation.”