News and trends about dumpster rentals, POD-like storage containers, and construction waste recycling around Appleton, Green Bay, and Oshkosh, Wisconsin.
Waste disposal is something that most people take for granted, yet know very little about. Each week we mindlessly fill our trash cans with household items we consider garbage, and then set the cans at the end of the driveway on our assigned day for a municipal employee (or a contracted private company) to whisk it away to a landfill…
“The Waste Industry” is basically a transportation service, and the commodity transported is garbage and recyclable materials. Internally, most waste management business run like any other business, with accounts payable, accounts receivable, cash flow, etc. This business is very capital-intensive, because a single basic truck can cost over a quarter million dollars. To be successful, a waste business’ equipment needs to be reliable; it requires a good maintenance plan, properly trained operators, and a solid safety program in place.
But what exactly do we mean when we talk about a waste business’ “equipment”?
Automated Side Loaders
An automated side loader is the type of truck that typically collects our residential waste and recyclables. Nicknamed “one arm bandits,” operators manipulate these trucks with a joystick from inside the cab. This joystick directs an arm to pick-up residential carts with a claw, and then lifts and tips the wheeled bins into the side of the truck. These automated side loaders have replaced the outdated rear loader, which generally required two to three people just to operate.
Front loaders are used by the largest segment of the industry, primarily because most businesses use waste containers that are compatible with these types of trucks. Front loaders can accommodate a 2-, 4-, 6-, or 8-yard container for waste and recyclables like cardboard and paper. Just like their name implies, front loaders pick up the dumpsters with arms on the front of the truck and dump the contents into the hopper located just behind the cab.
Roll-offs are primarily used for dumpster rentals for construction and demolition (C&D) work. Roll-off trucks transport a 20- or 30-cubic yard container to the project site, and then uses hydraulics to lift its bed so the roll-off container can do just that – roll off – with the assistance of a cable. When the dumpster is full, the truck uses a cable and winch system to pull it back onto the truck.
A roll-off that is safer and more efficient than the cable style is called a hook-lift, which is the type that we use at City Disposal. With a hook-lift system, the truck extends a 90-degree hooked arm and lifts the dumpster onto and off of the truck. Most hook-lift systems are on smaller, single-axle trucks and are usually used with containers that are 20-yards or less. These smaller trucks are much easier to navigate in residential areas. Better maneuverability means less chance for property damage when you rent a dumpster.
Some waste businesses try to operate all of these types of waste disposal trucks, while others like to specialize in a certain area. Regardless of the business strategy, the bottom line is waste businesses need good employees to operate their equipment. At City Disposal, our employees are the ambassadors, the backbone of our company, and our direct link to our customers. We encourage our drivers to communicate with our customers, identify any potential problems, and present opportunities for improvement. Investing time and money on the right employee pays dividends; companies are only as good as their worst employee.