Hauled and Stationary containers
The design of an efficient waste
collection system requires careful consideration of the type, size and location
of containers at the point of generation for storage of wastes until they are
collected. While single-family households generally use small containers,
residential units, commercial units, institutions and industries require large
containers. Smaller containers are usually handled manually whereas the larger,
heavier ones require mechanical handling. The containers may fall under either
of the following two categories:
Stationary containers: These are used for contents
to be transferred to collection vehicles at the site of storage.
Hauled containers: These are used for contents to
be directly transferred to a processing plant, transfer station or disposal
site for emptying before being returned to the storage site.
desirable characteristics of a well-designed container are low cost, size,
weight, shape, resistance to corrosion, water tightness, strength and
durability (Phelps, et al., 1995). For example, a container for manual handling
by one person should not weigh more than 20 kg, lest it may lead to
occupational health hazards such as muscular strain, etc. Containers that weigh
more than 20 kg, when full, require two or more crew members to manually load
and unload the wastes, and which result in low collection efficiency.
should not have rough or sharp edges, and preferably have a handle and a
wheel to facilitate mobility.
They should be covered to prevent rainwater from entering (which increases the weight and rate of decomposition of organic materials) into the solid
wastes. The container body must be strong enough to resist and
discourage stray animals and
scavengers from ripping it as
well as withstand rough handling by the collection crew and
mechanical loading equipment.
Containers should be provided with a lifting bar, compatible with the hoisting mechanism of the vehicle. The material used should be light, recyclable, easily moulded and the surface must be smooth and resistant to corrosion. On the one hand, steel and ferrous containers are heavy and subject to corrosion; the rust peels off exposing sharp edges, which could be hazardous to the collection crew. On the other, wooden containers (e.g., bamboo, rattan and wooden baskets) readily absorb and retain moisture and their surfaces are generally rough, irregular and difficult to clean.