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6 Ways to Prevent Unauthorized Use of Your Commercial Dumpster

Many businesses need a dumpster to handle large amounts of waste or recyclable material their operations generate. But when a dumpster is available, unauthorized persons — ranging from employees and nearby businesses to random strangers — may make themselves at home by putting their own trash in your unit. What can you do to prevent this? Discover six steps your business may consider.

1. Create an Enclosure

If the dumpster will be a permanent element, you might build a full enclosure for it. This enclosure is usually a stone or brick wall that not only prevents people from getting to the dumpster but also hides it from view and makes your property look nicer. However, this also makes future expansion harder, so consider your future growth needs. You may want to use a less permanent option such as chain link.

2. Add Security Cameras

Do you already have security cameras on your site? If so, install one or two that have a good view of the dumpster area. Add signage and let employees know about the cameras. This will likely deter most unwanted users. You’ll have to monitor the cameras on a regular basis or keep aware of what’s in the unit in order to catch perpetrators, though, so this solution is best for high-volume or expensive problems.

3. Choose the Right Spot

Where you place the dumpster has an impact on whether or not people use it when they’re not supposed to.

A dumpster near a busy street or sidewalk, for instance, makes drivers and passersby more likely to notice it and return with their own garbage. Similarly, a darker location provides more cover and is more appealing to trespassers than a well-lit area. On the other hand, putting the dumpster in a central area around employees could prevent some from adding their own trash while thinking that no one will notice.

4. Lock It Up

Do you close and lock up the dumpster’s lids between uses? This simple security measure means no one can access it without your knowledge or permission. But it has the unfortunate downside of causing the dumpster to be inconvenient and slowing down employees who legitimately need to use it during the day. If you only access it occasionally, this is a cost-effective solution.

5. Plan Alternatives

Do you struggle with employees or neighbors surreptitiously throwing in things they don’t want to deal with, such as old tires or construction debris? If so, you may need a solution that doesn’t damage your relationship with them.

In this case, perhaps you could designate a day or a week — which you publicize to staff and select others — when anyone can dump their own garbage free of charge. When people have a legitimate option, they’re less likely to resort to underhanded behavior. Or if the problem is potentially recyclable materials appearing in the dumpster, add a recycle bin to divert use of the dumpster.

6. Pick the Right Time

If the dumpster is a short-term rental, try to time it to minimize opportunities for use. Rather than rent it early, have it delivered just when you need it, then have it removed promptly. Have a special project that needs waste services? Avoid high-traffic periods, such as when the local university semester ends and everyone moves out of apartments, or when more employees are gone for a planned break.

Picking a more specific time to have a dumpster in your possession may be less convenient but could save a lot of trouble in the end.

Want more tips for ensuring that no one adds to or stresses your rented dumpster without permission? Start by talking with the waste management pros at Tiger Sanitation. We can help you find the right solutions for your business and your budget.

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