The directory of community and business organisations in Broadstone Dorset


Residents Association MagazinearrowSummer 2003 - 22

TO SKIP OR NOT TO SKIP, THAT IS THE QUESTION

Unlike block-paving it probably wasn't the Romans who started the skip-hire business. I don't know when it started or who started it, but it's big business now. I obtained the following information from a local company which should prove helpful to anyone contemplating the hire of a skip for the removal of garden rubbish. The company concerned have 6 lorries dedicated to skips, and a range of skips to suit most needs.

The question they are most frequently asked by potential hirers goes something like this: "I'm clearing my garden, what size do I need?" It really is best to assess for yourself the amount you want to get rid of. The smallest skip will hold about 2cu.yd. which equates to between 1.5 and 2 ton in weight. Midi skips, which hold 4cu.yd. are also very popular because they can be supplied with a drop door, which in turn makes loading easier. For real bulk skips holding 6cu.yd. are available, and can be supplied with or without a drop door. There are also monster skips with a 12cu. yard capacity, but they can not take twice the weight of a 6 yarder. Obviously price is a major consideration when deciding whether a skip is the right solution to your rubbish disposal problem. Prices vary according to size and also whether the skip will be left on the public highway, or if it can be left off-road. As a guide I can record that a Mini skip left off road is likely to cost about £66+ VAT. If it is left on the public highway you will be asked for about another £30+ VAT The Council Highways department issue and the skip owners obtain Public Liability Insurance in Dorset of £5 million. There is a requirement for cones to be placed around the skip and for warning lights to be displayed on the skip itself. Cones apparently disappear with astonishing speed, and damage is frequently caused to the lights thereby increasing the skip company's costs. As a comparison, but still as a guide only, a 6 yard skip would cost £127+ VAT, if dropped off road, with the additional £30+ VAT if it was required on the Public Highway. Charges are usually payable on delivery, and are theoretically calculated on a weekly basis. Customers are requested to ring and arrange for collection as soon as they have finished loading the skip.

Apparently customers provide a range of reasons why their skip must be removed quickly. The one I like best is that until the skip is removed, the planned funeral can not take place, because there is insufficient room to remove the body from the house.

Perhaps you do not care what happens to the contents of the skip after you have filled it. Some go to landfill sites and some go recycling centres where they are sorted. Other skips whose contents are known to comply, can go directly to inert tips. There is list of articles that may not be disposed of in skips. As a guide, I have learned that the following are prohibited : Fridges, freezers. asbestos, any kind of batteries, tyres and no liquids with special reference to waste oil, paint or brake fluids.

Skip users are always reminded that skips should not be overfilled. No more than level loads are the order of the day. The reason for this is obvious. Once the skip is hoisted on to the lorry and its contents netted, the skip owner would be liable for any loads that are not safe, which would include part of the contents falling on to the highway and constituting a danger to other road users.

The information contained in this article has been provided, without prejudice, by Dorset Skips on the Fleets Industrial Estate. Their phone number is 669597. Some members may recall having seen them featured in the TV programme House Doctor.

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Last Updated: 20th February 2004