1 night, 1 bridge, 50 bags of trash

1 night, 1 bridge, 50 bags of trash
HARD WORK: Mr Keria Peli can collect 50 bags of trash in just one night of cleaning Read Bridge and its vicinity.

In one night, it is not uncommon for Mr Keria Peli to collect 50 trash bags of litter from Read Bridge and its vicinity.

On a bad day, he collects 30 bags from just one round of cleaning the bridge.

This is despite the fact that at least five dustbins are placed around the bridge.

The trash is mostly left behind by irresponsible outdoor partygoers.

It is clear from the photos on these pages, taken last Friday night and Saturday morning, that not much has changed after the mess at Laneway Festival Singapore 2015 made the news.

Then, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong commented on Facebook, saying that Singaporeans should pick up their own litter so that we can progress from being a "cleaned city to a truly clean city".

Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong and the Public Hygiene Council chairman Liak Teng Lit also weighed in on the issue.

But it seems that their words may have fallen on deaf ears.

We watched Mr Keria, 49, at work at Robertson Quay and Clarke Quay last Friday at 10pm.

The Malaysian has been working for Veolia Environmental Services for the past 13 years and travels six days a week from his home in Johor to report for his 12-hour shift at 6.30pm. The cleaner earns about $1,200 a month.

At about 11pm, we followed Mr Keria to the vicinity of Read Bridge. There were droves of people drinking, leaving empty bottles, cans and plastic bags when they left.

Many partygoers thought nothing of littering, assuming that someone else would pick up after them.


Mr Nicholas Tan, 21, who frequents Clarke Quay and Robertson Quay, said: "I try to throw away my rubbish after I am done. But sometimes when you're tipsy, you might forget to clean up."

Mr Keria told TNP in Malay that the scene can get really bad.

"About a year ago, fights were a daily occurrence here," he said.

"Because there were a lot of broken bottles, it was hard to sweep up the glass pieces."

Sometimes, people get drunk and throw up on the bridge.

The stench would overwhelm him, but he said that as a cleaner, he has no choice but to clean it.

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