Manchester City Council

Manchester waste collectors go ultrasonic in bid to improve service

A research project in Manchester is examining whether ultrasound technology can be used to make sure that full litter bins are emptied at the right time.

Sensors have been installed inside 250 litter bins in the city centre and in public spaces across the city, to monitor how often the bins are full and how frequently they are being used.  This information will help the Council's contractor, Biffa, to increase the efficiency of the service, emptying bins before they get full.

Once a pre-set level has been reached, a message is sent to council operatives, letting them know that the bin needs to be emptied.

The research project commenced this month and is set to last for three months.  If it is proved to be successful, the technology could used in more of the city’s litter bins in future.

Executive Member for Neighbourhood, Councillor Nigel Murphy, said: “We are aware that some people have seen the sensors in litter bins and, in the current heightened security climate, would like to reassure residents that far from being something to worry about, these sensors have the potential to make our service more efficient.

“We’re keen to find out whether smart technology has the potential to help us reach bins which need emptying more quickly and will study the results of this research project with interest.”

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