Did You See That? Security Cameras at Recycling Facilities

June 14, 2022

NRRA members gathered at the Moultonborough, NH Transfer Station for a MOM meeting and to talk about the use of security cameras at recycling facilities. It turns out that Moultonborough has other natural guards at the station, too. Members got to see a black bear lumber by the building during the meeting and observed a snapping turtle during egg laying-season.

Many recycling facilities are spread out, which make it difficult to see what residents are unloading and if they are being safe. Staff shortages are common, so it makes it impossible to be in all places at once. Security cameras are useful not just for documenting safety issues with residents, but also safety for the staff as well. Some towns have one person on duty at the facility, and accidents can happen.

Ken Filpula, Moultonborough Transfer Station Supervisor and NRRA Board of Trustees member, let members know that Moultonborough had an accident where a commercial hauler was unloading their material and accidentally fell into the municipal solid waste hopper and was rescued. After that, Moultonborough contacted a local company, A Plus Alarms & Entertainment Systems out of Moultonborough, NH to set up security cameras. Ken provided a tour of their lovely facility and demonstrated how the TV screen shows all the cameras. There is a motion-detector that alerts the staff by highlighting one of the camera displays.

Members had different views on signage for security cameras. Some said that if their residents are reminded that they are on camera, they are more likely to obey the rules. Others didn’t want to call attention to the public cameras, as some residents will try to get around rules.

Security cameras serve more than keeping an eye on rule-breaking residents. Security cameras also are used as evidence in traffic accidents, a common concern for recycling operators. “Did you see that?” Staff might receive three different accounts of an accident when someone backs out of a parking space, but the security cameras have it on tape for insurance purposes and keeps the staff out of the argument.

Want to learn more about how other municipalities have used security cameras at their transfer stations?  NRRA municipal members can solicit input through NRRA’s member listserv.  Not a member of the email listserv? Request to join the listerv.