Lean Safety

22 June 2017

Hoffman’s Construction Trash Dumper

Written by  Jack Rubinger Published in Lean Safety

For years, contractors have been dumping smaller debris bins into larger trash dumpsters, either manually or by forklift. Many personnel have been injured: back strains, arms hurt, shoulder injuries, severed/lacerated fingers, pinch-point injuries, etc.

by Jack Rubinger, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 503-964-4877

The Construction Trash Dumper (CTD), introduced by Hoffman Construction, was designed as a new implement to help facilitate better efficiency (LEAN), reduce exposures (SAFETY) on job sites, and reduce employee exposures to these types of injuries.  

Hoffman leaders saw that there was a problem and challenged local industry subcontractors to create better ways to process construction debris on projects.  

The journey began in 2012 when Hoffman approached ERGOdynamics to potentially build an automated trash dumpster for construction sites.  Both Hoffman and ERGO dynamics witnessed how tight many construction sites are and together the two companies started brainstorming ways to create an effective and efficient automated construction dumpster implement. The goal was to have a compact machine that was mounted on rails to help distribute various construction debris into the large, rectangular metal dumpster containers — like a trash trolley.
ERGOdynamics took Hoffman’s concept sketches and modified certain auto-dumpsters they previously used for other customers — units that were made for those who had loading dock-type fixed debris areas. ERGOdynamics re-engineered a unit to satisfy construction site needs.

Hoffman convinced a new building owner to beta test the unit on a construction site. It was fabricated and delivered to Hoffman in 2015.  The first unit was battery operated.  It worked well and subcontractors were elated. Finally, someone came up with a better way to process construction debris.

The CTD version 1.0 was delivered to Hoffman and put into use. But version 1.0 had some issues and the project was shelved. Then, in the spring of 2016, The Automation Group purchased the intellectual property rights to ERGOdynamics.

Shortly thereafter, Hoffman reached out to the newly revamped EROdynamics and the CTD version 2.0 was in the works with a focus on improved ease of use, safety, additional power requirements, reliability and wireless remote controls. Hoffman and ERGOdynamics went back to the drawing board. Version 2.0 was completed and delivered to Hoffman in early spring of 2017.

The second unit, which is in use today at Hoffman’s OSHU South Waterfront Project, is powered by 230V, 3-phase power and has a higher, vertical reaching capacity for taller dumpster bins.  It’s engineered with both wireless and cable controls.  This unit has a modular steel base that can adapt to various ground compositions.  

Laborers, operators, and trade-specific subcontractor employees are being trained to operate the CTD with the goal of reducing employee exposures and cutting dispensing time in half.

The Automation Group/ERGOdynamics are now marketing this unit throughout the U.S. They have given Hoffman Construction the credit of work with them to facilitate the creation of this safe and efficient machine.


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