The leaves across the Tennessee Valley are changing into their fall colors. Some even say the myountains are look like a painting. With the foliage we also see the falling of leaves covering our lawns, cluttering our streets, and clogging drains and sewers.

To avoid these problems, some people just turn their leaves and brush into mulch. However, if you prefer, you can let the city pick them up. It's done every fall. You'll soon see the fleet of 11 collection trucks moving through Chattanooga neighborhoods covering 99 routes in numerical order.

"We're starting from the center of the city, and they're numbered numerically as you spin out in a spiral shape," explains Tony Boyd, Deputy Director of Citywide Services for Public Works.

He says the order of pick-up is based on where the most stops were made last year.

Boyd adds that the collections are for residential areas only. It's illegal for landscapers or contractors to dispose of yard waste, including brush and leaves, by placing materials at the curb for collection.

An extra challenge this year is working around the new protected bike lanes downtown. They'll be handled by leaf-blowing crews during off-peak traffic hours since collection trucks can't enter these lanes.

"They'll blow sidewalks, gutter lines, and get it our to the curb where our sweepers and one-arm leaf trucks can pick those up," says Boyd.

He says you must separate loose leaves, bagged leaves, brush, and bulky items for pick up. They're each handled differently. Move them as close to the curb as possible but not into the street. Also, don't rake leaves into the streets or ditches.

"Brush is different. Bagged yard waste is a separate service request, and so are loose leaves," adds Boyd.

You can also track crews through the public works website. Click here for an interactive map which helps you know when to expect pick up. If ou have any questions, call 3-1-1.