It can be so frustrating to spend hundreds of dollars on a dumpster rental, only to find that it has become full quickly with other people’s trash.
There is a lot of work that can go into hiring a dumpster, as you have to be able to estimate the size and weight limit your need for your project. This planning can be thrown out of the window when people start illegal dumping waste into your dumpster without permission, causing it to fill up quickly.
Illegal dumping is a common issue, as lots of people have to deal with trespassers dumping trash in the container they have paid for. While it is frustrating and unfair, thankfully, because illegal dumping is a common issue, there are ways to avoid it.
Is It Really Illegal Dumping?
When other people dump trash in a dumpster you have hired, and that is on your property, this is considered illegal dumping.
This means that, unless the owner of the property has given explicit permission for someone to use the dumpster for their trash, they are breaking the law when doing so – like they would be when fly tipping or littering.
This rule applies to dumpsters that are located on construction sites, commercial sites, a dumpster that is on your front drive, and any dumpsters situated on private property.
While the exact laws pertaining to illegal dumping will vary based on location and state, most places consider this action a misdemeanor. This means that illegal dumping can be punishable by fines and possible jail time, based on the case.
To learn more about illegal dumping in your area, make sure to check in with your local authorities to understand their stance on this issue and what can be done about it.
Why Is It Such A Problem?
If you have never hired a dumpster before, or perhaps have been known in the past to use your neighbors’ trash can once in a while, then you may be questioning why illegal dumping is such a problem.
Not only is using someone else’s dumpster without their permission illegal, but it can also cause additional stress to the person who owns it. If you have a dumpster on your property, you will want to stop people from dumping their trash in it because:
- It leaves less space in the dumpster for you to fill with the trash, materials, and debris you planned for. If a dumpster is overfilled and exceeds the weight limit, you will be charged overage fees, which can be up to $100
- As the dumpster becomes full, you may have to pay for a second dumpster to complete your project
- People may be dumping hazardous waste or debris that is not accepted by the dumpster rental company in your container, like paint. This will result in extra fees to handle this kind of trash
Essentially, when other people start dumping waste into your dumpster, it will cost you time and money, so you want to avoid it at all costs!
How To Stop People Using Your Dumpster
Dumpster rental can be an expensive thing to go through, so you want to make sure you are getting your money’s worth by using the container to its full capacity for everything you need.
There are some solutions you can implement to stop people from having access to your dumpster, which should prevent illegal dumping.
- Place the dumpster in an outbuilding or a closed, fenced area so it cannot be accessed from the streets or without trespassing
- When the dumpster is not in use, such as overnight, place a tarp over it and secure with bungee cords so it is not left open and easily accessible. This is a good thing to do regardless of your concerns of illegal dumping, as it can protect the container from rain and snow, which will make the waste heavier and more expensive to move
- Leave the dumpster in a well-lit area so you can see anyone who tries to trespass
- Likewise, install a security camera or perhaps multiple security cameras around the dumpsters to capture any form of illegal dumping or trespassing. Security camera footage can be used as evidence should this issue be taken further with the legal system
- Try to place the roll off dumpster on your property or as near as possible, rather than on the street. This is vital in a high-traffic area
- Load the dumpster quickly, and if possible, try to have the dumpster rental complete in a day, so the containers are not left on your property overnight
A simple cardboard sign around the dumpsters may be enough to throw people off using your container in some cases. Make sure to highlight that this is an illegal issue, as this may have more of an effect.
What If These Don’t Work?
If you have tried preventative measures to stop people using your dumpster, but to no avail, then you can contact the authorities.
Once you notice trash in the dumpster that is not yours, try to look for identifying labels or markings as this could indicate who has left it. If you manage to get the name of the person who is illegally using your dumpster, you can report them to the authorities.
Even if you do not manage to catch anyone in the act but are still noticing trash that not yours in the container, you may still want to contact the authorities anyway. This is especially important if the dumpster will be on your property for several days, as the issue could get worse.
Police may increase patrols in your neighborhood, which can deter trespassers.
Can The Dumpster Rental Company Help?
How much help a dumpster rental company can offer during times of illegal dumping will differ based on their policies and the extent of the situation.
Generally, the company is not liable for other people dumping trash in your container, as this is considered to be your responsibility as a renter. This is why preventative measures are often the best option.
However, if you are still seeing no success with these measures, it is recommended that you speak to the company about the situation. They may have some solutions they can recommend to protect your dumpster from trespassers.
If your case is very extreme, the company may even be able to offer a second dumpster for you to use at a reduced rate or discount what you are currently using so you can finish the clear out without more headaches.
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