Leaf-grinding 'goat' on the job in Chch

A new truck fondly nicknamed the “goat”. Photo: Newsline
A new truck fondly nicknamed the “goat”. Photo: Newsline
There’s a new “goat” in town - and it's been rolling around the streets of Christchurch munching through the blanket of autumn leaves.

Christchurch City Council contractors will continue to be busy with the leaf fall season through to July.

But this year they’ve got a new tool in their kit - several new trucks including one nicknamed the "goat".

“We’re always looking for ways to work more efficiently throughout leaf fall season. One of the trucks on our roads can now grind the leaves into small pieces, which is why they’ve called it the goat,” city streets maintenance manager Steve Guy said.

“It also reduces the number of times they have to empty a load so they can do more streets at a time.” 

There is also another new truck rolling around Christchurch streets with a remote-controlled snorkel.

“This new truck means we no longer need a person on the road manually moving the snorkel around. The person who previously operated the snorkel can instead use a leaf blower to direct leaves into an area where the snorkel can reach like around cars,” Guy said.

A 'leaf sucker' truck. Photo: Newsline
A 'leaf sucker' truck. Photo: Newsline
And a final new truck set to be launched at the end of the month, dubbed “Noo-Noo” after the vacuum in the 90s television show The Teletubbies.

“Noo-Noo is going to be a great addition for our contactors. One of these holds about the same amount of leaves as three smaller trucks.”

Guy said it’s important for people to remember that contractors are not able to sweep all of the leaves in the city.

“We’ve got five trucks moving through 980 high leaf fall areas throughout the city so our teams focus on areas where the leaves inhibit stormwater, compromise safety and inhibit the growth of underlying plants.”

Guy said residents shouldn’t worry if a sweeper truck leaves halfway through a street.

“This doesn’t mean they’re done with the job, just that the truck is full and needs to be emptied,” he said.

“Please be patient. Our teams work hard to clear leaves as quickly as possible, but sometimes heavy rainfall or high winds can cause more leaves to fall in a shorter period. We don’t want to receive reports of abuse when our teams are simply doing their jobs.”

  • If you are concerned about leaf litter contact the customer call centre on 941 8999 or log a ticket via the Snap Send Solve app.
How you can help
  • Reduce build-up by clearing leaves from your own berm and garden and putting them into your green bin.
  • Put leaves in your compost or pile them at the back of garden to break down. 
  • Please don’t dispose of your leaves after your street has been cleared and then call up for the street to be swept again. This slows down contractors.