Picking Up by Robin Lang all about Department of Sanitation New York City
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We used to have rodders on the front of our trucks but in 2009-2013 they upgraded to Freightliner chassis from the cab over Mack's like DSNY uses. Now the front of our trucks are bare aside from two outlets to plug stuff into and a water hose fitting for the gun.Mike2633 Thanks this.
DSNY The Human Cost
DSNY Operator Michael Hanly
Picking Up Robin Lang, Page 61 Copyright FSG 2013.
Anyhow the story of Michael Hanly
November 12 1996
Mr.Hanly had 23 years on the job working for DSNY. He was a collections man out of Brooklyn and was working the Bensonhurst route.
Mr. Hanly and his partner were on 8161 New Utrecht Avenue at 84th Street, in a light-industrial area of Bensonhurst.
They were nearing the end of there route at one of the last stops, there was a pile of non-descript house hold garbage and and a container facing away from the curb. The container was facing the wrong direction and had a skull and cross bones placard on it.
Mr. Hanly picked up the container and threw it in the trucks hopper like he would any other trash.
His partner, went to cycle the mighty placard blade, and Mr. Hanly bent over to grab some more material.
As the packer blade went through it's cycle the blade caught the container full of 70% hydrofluoric acid solution which then punctured and exploded out of the container and exploded all over Mr. Hanley, Mr. Hanley inhaled the acid and it burned out his internal organs and he died at age 49.
2000 Sanitation workers from around the region came to his funeral.
Frank Justich April 2004
Mr. Justich who was a valued DSNY employee was emptying a basket on Ditmars Blvd and 35th street in Astoria. He had just emptied a basket and was cycling the packer blade when a tractor trailer semit truck of all things was coming around the corner, blinded by sun glare and a dirty windshiled the semi truck driver misjudged his turning radius and came in to tight and just before 8:00 am that April morning Frank Justich was the 10th DSNY worker to lose his life in the line of duty in 8 years.
The Formation of the DSNY
For people like my self from the suburbs of Cleveland, there is really no rich history of are garbage collection, when the town was incorporated the garbage came along with the towns service department and there's really,
nothing more to say about it then that.
City of Rocky River, Ohio Leach 2RIII 25 yard rear load mother ship unit with city of Rocky River Cushman Satellite truck following.
City or Rocky River, Leach Alpha, 20 yard truck collecting recyclable flats.
Anyhow most suburbs around this town don't have the big dramatic history that the DSNY or Los Angeles Department of Sanitation have although LA's departments of sanitation is much much much newer being formed in the middle 1950s.
City of Danville, Illinois, E-Z-Pac Goliath picking up municipal yard waste.
Anyhow unlike the clean streets of the modern day suburbs, New York City in the 1800s was a rotten stinky disease infested place with dead animals rotting and lying in the streets for massive amounts of time and small children just hanging out by the dead animal bodies.
The modern day DSNY as we know it today was not officially formed and operating until 1895.
Will get into the formation of the department in my next post. But the 1800s were much different then the clean suburban streets of the suburbs of other towns far away. As New York was America's biggest and for a long time dirtiest city.
Modern Day DSNY Operations
Hi guys, sorry, I've been away. Anyhow lets get to it. So here's what we know. The DSNY was formed in the late 1880s after the city of New York became awash in garbage and was a huge health hazard. Mostly due to political corruption from the corrupt Tammany Hall administration.
However Tammany Hall era/group of politicians were eventually voted out of office and newer less corrupt more honest politicians were elected and George Waring was brought in, in 1895 to clean the city up because conditions were no longer tolerable.
Waring turned the DSNY into the para-military organization that it is today. Basically an army of people cleaning the city.
This was the birth of what we know of today as the modern day Department of Sanitation of New York City.
The DSNY runs 3 shifts around the clock.
You need to have at least a Class B CDL to work for DSNY.
There are 3 different Schools that the department operates for new recruits.
There is Class B CDL School for new recruits to get their license and be able to drive the dump trucks, and collection trucks.
Then they also have broom school & snow school.
Where they teach mechanical broom operation and snow removal operation.
The city operates 500 mechanical brooms.
In comparison the city of Los Angeles operates 70 mechanical brooms, so that's a huge difference.
When you graduate the DSNY CDL School which by the way does have a CDL Class A program, but most of what they do is Class B stuff.
The Hiring process for DSNY is fairly complex. You have to pass the sanitation workers civil service examination and get a place/number. Then you get called up and have to be drug tested and put through DSNY medical examination to get your medical card. Then you go to Class B CDL school. Operated by the department. School lasts approximately a week then you take the CDL test and get your assignments.
Either you are assigned to a broom depot and get to drive the mechanical broom or your in a truck depot and are on a collection route, doing recyclables, trash or baskets which are the public waste cans. Which are like the worst routes that the DSNY has, because it's constant walking, because the union shot them selves in the foot on this one and said that the step on the back of the truck was unsafe and that they shouldn't have to ride on it and the department said fine will remove them and you can walk.
So now there is some fake rule that says if you have certain amounts of seniority you don't have to do baskets, but if it's a snow storm or some event, the management at DSNY can put anyone on baskets and it's hilarious when the senior guys get put on baskets and cry and whine like cry babies when they get put on baskets, but managment can say snow emergency or this or that, so here's your route card not get to work or don't work here anymore.
Being a ground level foreman/supervisor at the DSNY is just awful your in a total no win position and all you do is get harassed by senior guys and pooped on by
Anyhow as a ground level manager for DSNY your job is to call the routes for the district. Meaning try to send out enough trucks to get the weights collected for the district and to make sure you have the right amount of people out on the road.
What happens is say and I don't know exactly how they figure out how much trash is sitting out on the street, but say the garage has 30 trucks and the day supervisor calls out 20 of the trucks and figures that's enough to get the garbage collected and then around 2pm, the trucks are coming back in and everyone is reporting that they are packed out and there is "still enough for 3" that means, that there are still 3 truck loads of garbage out on the street. By the way in 2013 DSNY directives considered target truck load weight at 10.5 tons or 20,500lbs was considered a load.
So then what would happen is full trucks would come back in and the evening shift would have to go and collect the 3 remaining loads or the day shift would hop in empty trucks and go collect the 3 loads.
Now what they do with the full trucks sitting in the yard if the day shift can't empty them is they have the night shift run what's called a relay. Where they take the full trucks to the transfer station and then back to the garage to get them ready for the next day.
Or they bring out an empty truck to a crew who's truck is filling up.
Now if a supervisor calls it wrong and either puts to many trucks out on the road, or to few trucks out on the road, they get in trouble, but if they call it right, they don't get a good job or anything they just get a big nothing from upstairs.
Sometimes all the night-shift does in some cases is run relays from the garage and to the transfer station and back.
It's a big operation much bigger, then Chicago, LA, Cleveland or St.Louis, it's the biggest municipal garbage hauling operation in the country.
Running the broom is manually an easier job, but it has it's stresses broom operators must know there routes well and be good in traffic and in some cases are under strict time limits to beat parking bans on certain streets, because if your on a broom and you get behind schedule the entire day could be lost.
We had the same kinda issues with our Vactors in the Environmental dept here at Con Edison. We only have 8-9 trucks running at any given moment (more like 5-6) and when we load up, some supervisors pay OT to get it dumped and ready for the next shift. But when I worked shift 3 (3-11pm), if we came in loaded or close to it, they would send us home and give the truck to Midnight's or shift 1, and they would dump 2-3 trucks and get them ready for the morning crew. So that was the ####ty part, day guys would get OT to dump, we get nothing but have to work our ##### off, and Midnight's gets the easy task of just shuffling back and forth to the pit to dump and take a nap.Last edited: Nov 15, 2019
It happened to Mrs. Nagle, she was working night relays and the man she was working with was angry at management and he lead her around in a circle for an hour after taking a 45 minute break and basically didn’t get his work done. Left 2-3 trucks loaded and full waiting at the depot.
you know running relays is easy work, by comparison to running actual collection routes, so I don’t know what the guy was mad about. I mean they could have made him do baskets, which if you ever hear the term “walking backwards” it’s DSNY lingo for dragging your fear, or going slowly.
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