SINGAPORE: Trucks with side-mounted lifting mechanisms will be collecting recyclables from Housing & Development Board (HDB) estates in the Ang Mo Kio-Toa Payoh and Jurong districts for one year, under a trial programme that will reduce the manpower needed for the collection process.
Currently, recyclables within HDB estates are collected using rear-end-loader trucks. These trucks are manned by one driver and two workers whose task is to push the blue recycling bins into truck for emptying.
The new side-loader trucks, however, will only require one worker- the driver, the National Environment Agency (NEA) announced on Saturday (April 21).
“The use of side-loader trucks is an opportunity to upskill workers in the environmental services (ES) industry and improve the productivity of recyclables collection through the adoption of technology,” said NEA chief executive officer Ronnie Tay.
“It is also an example of what job redesign can look like in the ES industry, to adapt to the changing circumstances and the needs of the environment,” Mr Tay added.
The trial commenced in the Ang Mo Kio–Toa Payoh sector on Friday, and will be implemented in the Jurong area on May 2.
Recyclables from 223 HDB blocks will be involved in the trials - 90 blocks in the Ang Mo Kio-Toa Payoh sector and 133 blocks in the Jurong sector, NEA said.
Along with the introduction of the side-loader trucks are new blue recycling bins, which are about three times the capacity of the current 660-litre receptacles.
The bigger and taller bins will prevent recyclables from overflowing and reduce pilfering, thereby enhancing the overall cleanliness and tidiness of the area around the recycling bins, said NEA.
Wheels have not been fitted on the new bins, in order to prevent the unauthorised shifting of the receptacles, the agency added.
The side-loader truck collection system has previously been successfully deployed in countries such as Italy, Spain and Australia.
In this system, the driver of the truck need only activate the vehicle’s lifting mechanism to collect automatically lift the compatible recycling bin and offload the recyclables into the truck’s storage compartment.
An on-board weighing system tracks the weight of recyclables collected.
The side-loader truck collection system is part of initiatives under the environmental services Industry Transformation Map launched in December last year.