Weighing software offers major savings for Las

The advance of sophisticated weighing systems , whether weighbridges, on-board vehicles or linked to bin lifters and containers, is set to continue at a rapid rate whether or not the UK opts for a pay-by-weight system for the collection of domestic waste on a national scale. The case for installing weighing systems is being made on a daily basis across the local authority and waste management service sectors in terms of improved efficiency and economy and better management all-round. In this special feature LAWE highlights new developments and products which can help management weighing up the options. In this first report PM Onboard reports on how users can make big savings with its latest software and cites its experience in Ireland where the Government is making the running on charging-by-weight.

Moving and recycling waste has not only developed into a huge industry, but it has also become a highly complex one. With each household in the UK producing in excess of a tonne of rubbish a year, the Government is exerting more and more pressure on the 465 local authorities to introduce bigger and better schemes to recycle.

PM Onboard's onboard weighing equipment, incorporating sophisticated software, is playing a key role in helping private contractors and local authorities introduce cost savings schemes to identify the weight of waste generated by each household together with the weight of recyclable material collected. In addition to providing incentives to change customers' attitudes towards recycling, the benefits extend to reducing the need for more and more landfill sites and ultimately saving taxpayers' money.

Charging by weight

Already, a number of UK councils are following the lead of local authorities in Ireland where PM is closely involved in the Irish Government's overall strategy of charging by the weight of waste collected. It is already evident that collection charges based on the weight of the waste can result in huge reductions in the amount discarded. Consumers become more responsible in their attitude to recycling and the environment and, at the same time, have greater control over the amount they will be charged.

With PM's BinWeigh™ system, the technology is now readily and easily available for local authorities and private contractors to instigate schemes to charge householders for the amount of waste thrown out. The new technology has made it possible to collect specific data on the type and quantity of rubbish picked up from each householder and then simply download the information back to the office for immediate invoicing.

'Fifth utility'

The pay back on the start-up costs involved in setting up suitable schemes is soon realized. Once the hardware and software packages have been purchased and put into place dramatic results are witnessed in terms of reduction of waste disposed of and local tax payers enthusiasm. After all, householders pay for the amount of telephone, gas, electricity and water metered, so arguably one could ask why should not domestic waste be added as the "fifth utility".

Operators looking at "pay by weight" schemes, and there are now many such local authorities doing so, can talk to PM, who are now recognised as one of the world's leading experts in this revolutionary technology.

From the on board weighing system itself, the bins and the microchips to the individually designed software, which provides management and invoicing systems, PM's engineers are able to meet any situation and customers' individual requirements.

Weighing system

The system itself, the dynamic BinWeigh™, identifies and weighs the wheeled bin containers as they operate and provides the complete Charge-by-Weight Management System. It manages weighing transactions by collecting and downloading the data recorded on the vehicle back to a computer at base. Invoices are simply raised and sent to the customer.

Ireland has responded well to the environmental problems being created by mountains of waste: with effect from 1 January 2005, all local authorities will be required to introduce pay-by-weight household collection schemes. Introducing these schemes has been made possible through the employment of PM's technology and now a number of councils, including Cork, County Council, Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council, and Mr Binman Ltd in County Limerick already have systems up and running. PM is also working closely with many UK local authorities, who are currently looking at the possible introduction of charging householders individually by the volume of waste they dispose of.



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