The “pay as you throw” age is here as variable rate programs continue to gain momentum across the country, with some areas reducing disposal tonnage by 40 percent. More than 1,000 communities are expected to adopt a variable rate program in 1994.
Accountability for trash at the collection point is imperative in any variable rate program or pay-by-weight systems. Radio Frequency Identification (RF/ID) technology answers the problems of accountability for such rate programs. Each resident has one or more roll out carts installed with a transponder or “tag” that contains a unique identification number. This number correlates with a profile on the cart customer which is located in the city database. Profiles can contain information such as name, address, size and color of the cart, rate collection and a chronological history of collection and maintenance over a period of time.
A truck equipped with a transponder reader system automatically reads the transponder when the cart is emptied. A date and time is assigned at the instant each cart is read and sent with the ID to the onboard computer, which the stores the daily route data and batch loads it to the city database at the end of the day or the information can be sent via modem the truck to the city database.