How Do I Stop People From Throwing Their Trash In My Dumpster?

“One night, I just couldn’t sleep,” Stan, a Westchester county business owner, explained. “I had this huge project on my desk that needed to get done, and I couldn’t stop thinking about it. Finally, around 2:30 in the morning, I gave up, got out of bed, and headed to the office. And when I got there, I couldn’t believe what I saw.”

There was a car parked behind his business, and Stan observed a couple opening their trunk. “They had like three or four trash bags, and they were tossing them in my dumpster. It wasn’t very smart of me, but I approached them and asked, “What are you doing?” They told me they had permission, and I said, “I don’t think so. I pay for that dumpster, and I never gave you any permission!” Luckily, the couple took off without the situation escalating, but Stan wants to avoid a repeat performance. “How do I stop people from throwing their trash in my dumpster?”

Sadly, people taking advantage of other people’s waste management dumpsters is not a new situation. This practice tends to become more prominent during times of economic downturn, when money is tight and people don’t want to pay for their own trash removal. Best practices to prevent this abuse from happening to you include:

Bright Lighting Positioning your waste management dumpster in a well-lighted area will discourage people from dumping their trash there. This doesn’t work on everyone, but it does discourage the more timid folks.

Fencing It is a good idea to put a strong, locking fence around your waste management dumpster. This discourages people from dumping their trash in your dumpster, as well as dumpster divers and people who may attempt to use your dumpster as a shelter. Talk to your waste management company about ensuring they have access to the dumpster as needed!

Signage As simple as it sounds, posting an official looking sign that says unauthorized dumping in prohibited is suprisingly effective at sending would-be trash dumpers elsewhere. Some business owners also opt to add security cameras to the mix; if nothing else, the footage can be forwarded to law enforcement in addition to your complaints.