Residents who believe their rubbish and recycling bins have gone missing are being urged to contact the council for help.

Rotorua Lake Council's Director of Transport and Waste Solutions, Stavros Michael, said it was too soon to presume bins had been stolen given they were still being delivered by the distributor.

"By and large we have received a few inquiries regarding missing bins. However, we are encouraging any resident who believes their bins are missing to call the council first so our staff can help provide them with advice.

"There may be a few reasons why they may not have their bins. Either a neighbour has accidentally collected the wrong bins or the bins may have been damaged during transit or delivery.

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"If this has happened, the distributor would keep the bins so they can be repaired and redelivered soon."

He said if people had not received their bins by the middle of this month they should call the council.

"If unfortunately someone has deliberately taken bins from another property, these would eventually be identified when they are picked up and their address scanned by the collection driver.

"In this case, the bin would be retained and the council would decide what action to take depending on the circumstances."

He said the distribution of wheelie bins and crates was progressing well with more than half the 26,000 or so homes in Rotorua having received their rubbish and recycling sets.

In a written statement, the council said every bin would be scanned on collection day.

"At the moment, this data helps us identify the addresses of each bin and also locate any bins that are not at the right address.

"In future, we intend to use the data collected to measure how much rubbish and recycling each home is producing, which would help us forecast how we develop resources and facilities to cater for recycling and waste."