Many communities across the country are transitioning from manual rear- and front-load residential garbage and recycling collection in order to realize time- and cost-saving benefits of automated curbside processes. Automated refuse collection is becoming the standard of service nationwide, making curbside trash collection more efficient, cleaner and safer for everyone.
Manual collection requires teams of 1-3 workers to lift and empty trashcans into a mobile compactor. This physically demanding, repetitive work can result in injuries. It is slower, less efficient and results in much higher spillage rates. Manual collection also exposes workers to traffic or waste, which increases risk of serious injury, illness or even death.
Automated collection requires special equipment, including trucks and carts. The most distinguishing feature of automated collection trucks is the robotic arm that swings outs, lifts the container, and dumps trash and recyclables into the compactor bin. Automated collection also requires uniform carts that are specially designed to work with the truck and robotic arm. Positioning carts in the proper direction in the correct position is critical to success of the automated refuse collection, but simple steps to educate the public and get them to understand the benefits will help you achieve successful implementation.
Automated refuse collection remedies many of the problems of manual systems. The driver does not have a constant need to leave the vehicle or be exposed to potentially dangerous traffic. The best part—a single operator using an automated refuse collection vehicle can service up to 300% more homes than a manual rear-loading vehicle. The benefits of automated refuse collection include:
- Enhanced Service Delivery: Customer satisfaction rates are higher with automated refuse collection than manual collection. Senior citizens like the convenience of using a cart program.
- Cleaner Communities: Carts have closed lids, are designed not to tip over and efficiently empty into trucks. That means less garbage on the streets of the community.
- Higher Recycling Rates: Automated recycling collection provides residents with a convenient wheeled cart for recyclables. This makes it easier for residents to recycle more.
- Improved Safety: Automated refuse collection greatly reduces physical injuries and accidents for sanitation workers. The result is lower turnover rates and fewer injury compensation claims. Drivers careers can also be extended with automated refuse collection. The automated process also means that trucks spend less time in neighborhoods and around pedestrians.
- Sustainability for the Planet: More homes can be serviced with fewer vehicles, making it more fuel-efficient with less greenhouse gas emissions.
- Cost-Effective: In 3-5 years, most communities recoup their initial investment and realize continued year-over-year savings thereafter over manual collections.
Republic Services can help you determine whether automated collection is right for your community. The considerations of automated collection adoption include service levels, structure of applicable charges, number of households and pickups, geographic issues, equipment maintenance costs and workforce issues. Contact a Government Services representative
today to find out if automated collection is right for your community.