by Ranger Kidwell-Ross, editor
'Tis the Season for Moving Parked Vehicles – Or is it?
As someone with an eye for sweeper news, I see a bountiful crop of notices about vehicle removal this time of year, as well as numerous complaints on the same topic. Fortunately, the digital age is now spawning city-provided apps designed to help citizens remember to move their vehicles. That will no doubt help to offset complaints about the process which, hopefully, will also spur more municipalities to require vehicle removal on sweeping days.
As educated municipal managers should be aware, power sweeping is the most cost-effective manner of street-based pollutant removal available – as long as the sweeper can get to the curb, where most of it resides.
Currently many, if not most, cities requiring vehicle removal prior to sweeping more than cover their sweeping budget with the stream of dollars from tickets. However, that comes at a significant political price in terms of citizen complaints and dissatisfaction. As the apps that auto-notify (pun intended) become more sophisticated, the complaints will be going down – along with some amount of the revenue stream.
If just one vehicle is parked curbside, the loss is at least three vehicle lengths: one to pull out, one where the vehicle is parked and one for the sweeper to pull back in. Unfortunately, where vehicle removal is not mandated, there can be many clogged spaces per block being swept, sometimes so much so that sweeping becomes merely an exercise in wasting city dollars.
As water quality degredation continues to emerge as one of today's leading crises, it is becoming vitally important that vehicles are removed prior to streets being swept. To this end, municipalities need to educate their citizens on the impact vehicle removal has on increasing the total amount of pollutants removed via sweeping.
Now, with the availability of smart apps designed to help people remember to move their vehicles, municipal managers face less criticism than ever about having a vehicle removal requirement for their sweeping program.
The importance is undeniable and, when it comes to both reducing stormwater runoff pollution and overall health, safety and cleanliness, to do so is a no brainer. I urge any such managers reading this to at least work toward that goal. If you have questions, chances are the WorldSweeper organization can assist, so feel free to contact us.
As always, if you have any news of potential interest to the power sweeping community, please let us know. Between this publication, the WorldSweeper.com website, and the World Sweeping Association, we'll be sure to get the information passed along to interested readers.
Executive Director, World Sweeping Association
Member, PAVEMENT Hall of Fame
PS If you're a contractor I urge you to check out the many benefits of membership in the World Sweeping Association. Also, if you haven't 'liked' our WorldSweeper Facebook page, what are you waiting for? That's where we offer a variety of industry previews and updates on an ongoing basis.
May Newsletter Contents
(Scroll down to read stories or click on links below.)
- Global Introduces World's First Electric Heavy-Duty Street Sweeper
- Philadelphia Ramping Street Sweeping Back Up
- Denver's Street Sweeping Program Includes Technology Advances
- Street Sweeping in Dhaka, Bangladesh
- Sweepers of the Future, Circa 2019
- Reminder About World Sweeping Association Scholarships
- Midwest Sweepers & Scrubbers to Host Street Sweeper Rodeo
- Not Exactly Sweeping: Spain's Laziest Street Sweeper?
Global Introduces World's First Electric Heavy-Duty Street Sweeper
The management team of Global Environmental Products have achieved their vision of street sweepers that clean streets with a high-performance, heavy-duty sweeping system – as well as being affordable and reliable with cutting-edge innovative technology – and doing it all while producing ZERO EMISSIONS.
With a travel speed of 65-MPH and a battery operational range of up to 11 hours, towns, villages and large cities will be able to clean their streets while protecting our environment and building a cleaner future with ZERO EMISSIONS. At the end of the shift just plug in the sweeper, charge the batteries and repeat and sweep again.
Check out the new product.
Philadelphia Ramping Street Sweeping Back Up
Until the 1970s, Philadelphia was regarded as one of the cleanest cities in America, employing a robust sweeping program that employed thousands of workers. But federal cuts at a time when the city's tax base was shrinking would set this program on a protracted decline, with the last remaining neighborhood routes being terminated in the 2000s.
Check out the story.
In recent times just $850,000 of the Sanitation Department's $90 million annual budget is dedicated to street sweeping operations, less than one percent of its overall spending. However, according to reporting, Philadelphia will be upping that budget by several million per year, as well as trying an approach of using 'an army' of laborers with backpack blowers to keep from having to move vehicles.
Denver's Street Sweeping Program Includes Technology Advances
Denver's 34 street sweepers include what the city believes is the first small electric sweeper in the United States, which is only used to tidy up the protected downtown bike lanes.
In residential areas where vehicle removal is required, sweeping is done once per month. As reminders, the City posts signs in those residential areas as no-parking zones. Although non-compliance results in a $50 ticket, residents are reminded to "SHOW YOUR PRIDE AND MOVE YOUR RIDE" on sweeping day. However, residents may also sign up for sweeping reminders through a system called PocketGov, which was developed to assist residents in a variety of other areas, as well.
Take a look at the info.
Street Sweeping in Dhaka, Bangladesh
Bangladesh is both an old and a new country. Jammed between India and Myanmar at the top of the Bay of Bengal, the country has a history stretching back 4,000 years. Although a Muslim country, it has a relatively benign mostly secular population of around 170 million.
There is no chance of sweeping any of the streets during the daytime, there is hardly enough room for the traffic, let alone any form of sweeping. The simple solution is to sweep manually at night. Just in Dhaka North 4,000 hand broom sweeper personnel are sent out each night. Dhaka South has a slightly larger area and utilizes 7,000 manual sweepers. Our coverage includes a number of photos showing life in Dhaka.
Check out the information.
Sweepers of the Future, Circa 2019
With nearly 2,500 registrations and artists from 110 countries, the NVIDIA Metropia 2042 Challenge brought creators together to visualize a futuristic world surrounded by cutting-edge technology. Second place in the 'Vehicles of the Future' category went to UK prop artist Joe Seabuhr's rendition "Sweepers of the Future."
Take a look.
Seabuhr's vision includes a vehicle chassis that is fully modular, allowing for up to 4 autonomous smaller cleaning units to be mounted onto the rear of the unit for transport. He sees the carrier machine, which is also a sweeper in its own right, as having quick, self-inflating tire technology, which will allow for more stability when unloading.
Reminder About World Sweeping Association Scholarships
It's time once again to remind everyone to get info about WSA's Memorial Scholarship program up onto your bulletin boards and distributed to your employees. This marks the seventh year that WSA will be providing two scholarships of up to $2,000 each toward tuition and other education costs to two students connected with the sweeping industry. These may be employees, or children of employees, who are or will be attending an accredited university or technical school.
Learn more about the WSA's Memorial Scholarships as well as WSA Membership.
Here is a link to the WSA Memorial Scholarship page as well as all the application instructions. Click here for a ready-to-print PDF form you can use as a way to get the info to your employees. Chances are that some of your workers have kid(s) that would really benefit from getting a scholarship. The amount of each scholarship is $1,000, which is doubled if a winning student is connected to a company that is a WSA Member.
We encourage you to distribute info about the availability of these scholarships widely throughout your organization. Applications will be accepted until July 1st.
Midwest Sweepers & Scrubbers to Host Street Sweeper Rodeo
Mechanical, vacuum and regenerative air sweepers will all be on hand at the May 30th Street Sweeper Rodeo sponsored by Midwest Sweepers & Scrubbers, a Johnston dealer. The event will be held at Heartland Motorsports Park in Topeka, KS.
Learn more about the event at the website or download the event flyer as a PDF file.
Factory Direct Technicians will teach classes with a "hands-on" approach with a proper pre-operations check list with Operator Safety (OS) being highlighted. Besides the sweeper operator/maintenance classes, the event will have classes on storm water runoff best practices and safety issues. There will also be a section on best shared practices for fleet management, focusing on improving sweeping quality while reducing wearable and maintenance costs.
Not Exactly Sweeping: Spain's Laziest Street Sweeper?
A video of a 'lazy' street sweeper in Spain has gone viral after he was captured kicking rubbish off a pathway after carefully checking that no one was looking.
The worker can clearly be seen watching for a break in passing traffic and looking all around before kicking a pile of rubbish from the path into scrubland alongside – instead of collecting it up and popping it into his hand cart. He then ambles off totally unaware that his actions had been captured on film...
Check it out!.