Making the decision to automate solid waste and recycling fleets isn’t a decision to be entered into lightly. Converting from a rear loader to an automated side-loader (ASL) or an automated front-loader (AFL) unit takes some consideration of routes, safety of drivers, types of fuel and technology necessary to meet the demands of a city’s specific collection needs.
The upfront cost may also put off the powers that be from making the change, but automation can add significant savings and greater safety to converted fleets says Heil Environmental’s Director of Mobile Products, Anthony Henson.
“In the case of those converting from rear-loader to AFL, it’s not cheap, because it’s cheaper to buy rear-loaders on the front end than to order an ASL or AFL,” Henson says. “But from a safety standpoint, the number of drivers, the number of units you have to maintain—there’s definitely a savings.”