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Thursday, December 10, 2009

Recycling carts

At least 3 people in my neighborhood, myself included, found our entire recycling carts had gone missing yesterday after pickup. There's 3 possibilities that occur to me, although maybe you can think of something i'm missing.

1 - Someone is going around before the recycling is picked up and taking the full carts. As the price for recyclables is at a rock bottom, and most of what i've got in my bin is packaging materials anyway, i've got to assume they'd be looking for financial information, account numbers, etc.

2 - Someone is going around after the recycling is picked up and taking the empty carts. I can't think of a single reason why this would be fun, but i'm pretty naive about some things.

3 - There's a defective recycling truck out there that's occasionally dumping the entire cart along with its contents into the back of the truck. Nobody at Solid Waste has noticed this yet.

This being Durham, which do you think is the most likely?

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  • I'd assume it was theft for personal use. These things are pretty nice, mostly waterproof, wheeled containers, and unlike the garbage bins they're not likely to have as much nasty waste residue.

    I'd think it would be a logical upgrade for somebody currently using stolen grocery carts.

    By Blogger Jeremy T, at 10:53 AM  

  • I would guess it got blown away because they leave the tops open on them after collecting them. I've found some in the middle of the streets.

    By Blogger dianesowo, at 4:28 PM  

  • Nah - we're on the absolute lowest point of the block. Everyone else's cart ends up here after a storm.

    By Blogger Barry, at 4:31 PM  

  • How about a combination of things?: Other neighbors' were blown away, they assumed theirs ended up in the bottom, and came down to claim one.
    When I lived in Greensboro, we had to chain ours to the building at work because the city would come and confiscate it if it ended up in the street, and because neighboring businesses would come and try to steal ours if theirs blew away, rather than call the city to get theirs back.

    By Blogger girlnblack77, at 4:49 PM  

  • I suppose any of these things could have happened. Here's a few more things to consider. As mentioned, my house is the point on the block where other peoples carts gather when they run away from home. My empty trash cart was still exactly where it belonged. Almost every other cart on the block was also in front of its house, except for two neighbors who were similarly lacking recycle carts.

    It was 9 in the morning when i went to retrieve the trash cart and noticed the recycle cart was missing. The truck could have come, at the earliest, at 8 am.

    There was so sign of dumped recyclables anywhere on the block.

    So, if someone took it, they either took the full can (and at least two others, from different blocks, based on private emails i've received) and didn't discard any of the papers, cereal boxes, or other worthless stuff; or they were following closely behind the recycle truck and grabbed the bin shortly after it was emptied.

    Like i say, mystery to me. Although Occam's Razor suggests the likelihood of a defective collection truck.

    By Blogger Barry, at 5:04 PM  

  • This being Durham, Occam's razor might suggest any of those. Or something to do with Lavonia Allison.

    By Blogger Marsosudiro, at 11:23 PM  

  • Maybe the cart manufacturer designed the cart in such as way such that each time a cart is picked up it has a small chance of slipping out of the robo-grip and falling into the truck. This ensures a recurring revenue stream for the manufacturer as the city will need to regularly re-order carts.

    Or maybe the robo arm of the truck is too strong, or moves too fast, throwing the cart out of its grip.

    I'll have to pay more attention when recycling is picked up again in two weeks.

    By Blogger Steve Graff, at 11:26 PM  

  • I watched a claw truck drop a cart into the truck last week, on University across from Hope Valley Elem School. The driver did stop the truck and appeared to be trying to retrieve the cart, but I'll bet they don't always notice.

    Do they compact the recycling? If not, it would be interesting to see how many blue carts are retrieved from the waste stream wherever it gets sorted.

    By Blogger katuah, at 3:27 PM  

  • Can a hobo live in one?

    Maybe you should check under the nearest bridge?

    Just sayin'!

    By Blogger Tony, at 10:42 PM  

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