Yard Dumping Procedures

In this video, we’ll review the important roles and procedures of those who work on the Service Sanitation dump team.


Getting Started

At the beginning of our shift, it’s important that we gather all our proper PPE including safety glasses and rubber gloves. We’ll also need to make sure our work area is clean and free of any trash or debris, especially while the sun is still up. This is because once the sun sets it’ll be harder to spot any potential trip hazards.

As we finish cleaning the dump area, a member from the prep team will bring our first truck over from the prep garage. At this point, the truck has been restocked with water, toilet paper, cleaning agents, and new rubber gloves. It’s now our turn to empty the waste tanks and refuel the vehicle. To help maximize productivity, it’s important that both procedures occur simultaneously. To learn more about the fueling process, please watch the video titled, How to Fuel a Vehicle. With that information at hand, let’s review the dumping process.

Confirm Room in Tanker

As the prep team pulls up, they’ll do their best to park the truck within 10-15 feet from the rear of the bulk tanker. Once parked, they’ll jump out of the vehicle and keep the engine running. This is our queue to get started. We’ll begin the dumping process by visually inspecting the tanker, ensuring there’s enough room inside the tanker to handle the current load. Failing to do so could overload the tanker causing a hazardous spill. We can easily do this by looking at the sight bubble on the rear of the tanker or by climbing on top of the tanker, maintaining three points of contact when doing so, and looking directly into the hatch to see if there’s room. As the tanker begins to fill, a spotter may be needed to watch the top of the tanker. Typically we’ll want to keep a few inches between the waste levels and the top of the tank. Once the tanker is full, we’ll need to switch to another one.

Closing the Valves and Attaching the Hose

Once we’ve confirmed there’s enough room in the tanker, we’ll walk around to the passenger side of the vehicle and flip the waste lever from vacuum to neutral and then pressure. It’s also important that we ensure all the valves on the truck are in the closed position including the wands on both sides of the truck. Failing to do so, will cause waste to explode from any opened valve. With the valves closed and the pressure valve enabled, we’ll walk back to the driver side of the vehicle and place a drip pan or bucket underneath the main discharge valve on the truck. With the drip pan in place, we’ll make sure the discharge valve on the waste valve is closed. We’ll then remove the cap from the waste valve, catching any residual waste inside the drip pan. As this drip pan fills, we can dump it into the temporarily dump it into the large drip pan located under the tanker. This can be pumped at a later time. We’ll then firmly secure the main hose from the tanker to the truck by way of the attached cam locks. Once the hose is attached, we’ll give it a small tug to ensure its secured properly. Next, we’ll slowly open the waste valve from the truck and then activate the PTO inside the truck. As pressure slowly builds up inside the truck, we’ll open the inlet valve on the back of the tanker, allowing the waste to freely flow from the truck into the tanker. This process will often take 3-5 minutes. We’ll know when the truck is empty when the hose begins to rattle on the ground. We’ll then close the inlet valve on the tanker and deactivate the truck’s PTO. Never, I repeat NEVER, turn off the truck’s PTO with the tanker’s inlet valve still open. If this occurs, the waste could potentially rush back into the hose, creating a nasty mess when you go to remove the hose in the next few steps. Once you’ve confirmed the tanker inlet valve is closed and the truck’s PTO is disabled, you’ll want to return to the passenger side of the vehicle to adjust the vacuum/pressure valve back from pressure to the neutral position. This will release any pressure from inside the tank. After a few seconds, you’ll want to move the lever back int the vacuum position. Never forget this important step as it will prevent pressure issues when you go to remove the hose and it’ll make sure the valve is in the correct position for the driver. We’ll then walk back to the driver side of the vehicle and close the discharge valve on the truck, remove the hose, and secure the valve cap. This will complete the dumping process.

Unload Dirty Units

Once the truck is dumped, the individuals responsible for dumping and fueling will need to make sure any dirty units on the truck are unloaded properly and put in a dirty pile. This includes any units on the back of pumper trucks or hybrids. Once the units are carefully removed, the straps will need to be rolled up and placed back inside the passenger side of the vehicle. Additionally, the tailgate should be placed back in the upright position and the corresponding straps should be reattached to hold it in position.

After the truck is dumped, fueled, and free of any dirty units, a member of the Dump/Fuel team will need to drive the vehicle back to their designated parking area, backing the truck towards the fence line. This will indicate to other team members which trucks have been prepped and dumped versus which haven’t. Once parked, this individual will then locate a truck that’s pulled in towards the fence line and driver it back to the prep bay. This will help increase yard productivity and prevent them from having to walk back and forth all evening. We’ll then continue this process for the duration of the evening until all the trucks have been dumped and refueled for the next day.

End of Shift Responsibilities:

As your shift comes to a close and all of the trucks in the yard have been dumped, we’ll want to prepare for our end of shift responsibilities.  These tasks include picking up all gloves and garbage and returning them to their proper locations. Making sure all waste lines are cleared, tanker valves are capped, and the catch trough below the tanker valve is pumped dry. Hoses should be neatly stored next to the tanker or placed out of the way to limit tripping hazards.