Dumpster divers can be the bane of a business owner's existence. While they are out there rifling through your dumpster under the cover of darkness (or even in broad daylight,) they can leave behind a mess that you have to send one of your employees out to clean up. Not only is this frustrating, but it is ultimately costing you money when it comes to time spent by your staff cleaning up instead of doing their actual job. Unless it is specifically prohibited by local regulations, dumpster diving is legal within the United States. However, there are three ways you can minimize the effects these divers have on your business.
Protect The Dumpster Behind Fencing
While dumpster diving is legal in the US, entering a fenced property to access the dumpster is not. However, if you do not wish to fence in the dumpster, it can still be argued that when a dumpster is directly touching your business building, it is part of your private property, and therefore trespass laws apply.
When you want to keep people out of your dumpster, you really only have one option open to you. You must move the dumpster to a location which is within your property fences and place a no trespassing sign nearby. The types of trespassing signage vary between the states, but in Texas, for example, criminal trespass can be prosecuted if a person remains on your property without receiving consent and if signs are posted on the property that clearly state it is forbidden for them to be there.
Of course, there are other ways you could make signage work for you too.
Spell Out The Dumpster Contents Through Signage
When you are running an industry that has sharp waste going into the dumpster, you may be concerned about harm coming to a dumpster diver and what it legally means for you if it happens.
Legally, it is unlikely a person in your dumpster could sue you for injury, unless you specifically put something in their way to harm them. You cannot protect your dumpster using force, and you cannot booby-trap the dumpster so it causes harm to a dumpster diver. If you do, then a personal injury lawyer will be knocking on your door with a claim.
If you morally want to alert dumpster divers that the contents are sharp, then you must put signage up letting them know this. You could make up a sign yourself and tape it to the dumpster, or you could have a sign custom made to alert that the contents of your dumpster are dangerous to a diver's health.
Of course, sometimes the best way to make your dumpster rental experience more positive is to adopt the "if you can't beat them, join them" mentality.
Make The Good Stuff Easily Accessible
If your main problem with dumpster divers on your property is the mess they leave behind, there are two distinct ways you can tackle this problem.
- Dumpster divers are looking for things they can either sell online, use for themselves, or recycle for money. Before your employees put anything into the dumpster, get them to ask themselves if it would be valuable to a diver. If it is, then have them either lay it out in full view on top of the dumpster's contents, or on the ground beside the dumpster. If it is valuable, it won't be there for long.
- Make up signage asking the divers to clean up after themselves, and let them know that continued mess will result in the dumpster being replaced by a compactor. Generally, dumpster divers are not vandals and will respect your property when they are gently reminded.
Dumpster rental is a fact of life for many businesses, and your business needs a convenient place to put its trash. One man's trash will always be another man's treasure, so use these tips, and learn to live in harmony with your local dumpster divers. For more information on dumpster rentals, contact a business such as TCM Sweeping and Disposal.