New Technology Helps Monitor Tulsa's Trash Service

Thursday, November 28th 2013, 9:11 pm
By: Emory Bryan

Tulsa's trash and recycling trucks pick up 45,000 cans each day, loaded with technology.

Tulsa's trash service looks about the same as it always has, but technology is changing the flow of information. Every time a can is lifted up at the truck, an electronic record is created, so someone knows the cart is emptied and where it's placed back at the curb, and a GPS record marks the moment the truck drives away.

Inside the cab of every New Solutions truck, computer monitors show the addresses, note when a can is emptied - and the driver can mark if it's not out - or overflowing.

That helps the trash hauler and the city track the service. The information comes back in real time.

"It's nearly instant. As soon as they tip a cart, I usually find out about it," said Colt Henson, of New Solutions.

11/22/2013 Related Story: City Of Tulsa Dealing With Increase In Green Waste With Falling Leaves

And though there's a lot of information, the city says it's detached from the names of individuals and they don't weigh it or photograph it or try to figure who is recycling or not.

They do know exactly which cans are emptied into which truck and when.

A computer chip embedded in each cart makes it possible. It enables the technology that replaced big maps and markers. For the hauler, the technology powers the most efficient routes at the least cost.

"The routes have been completed...without a shadow of a doubt that things are being handled the way they should be," said New Solutions President Jason Kannady.