The Bear-Proof Bin
According to an Ipsos-Reid survey taken in 2000, 99 percent of Albertans
have used one of the five National Parks in the province. The draw is
undeniablepristine, protected wilderness. While Parks Canada does its
best to protect our natural heritage, protecting wildlife and ensuring
human safety within these areas can be difficult. Haul-All Equipment
Systems of Lethbridge, Alberta, has joined this effort and using their
ingenuity, manufactures a garbage bin designed to protect wild animal
populations and preserve their numbers.
Bears, like humans, enjoy a hamburger now and then. They also like potato
chips, chocolate and just about anything they can find in our garbage.
Once they've had it, they want more. This is a problem for both wildlife
health and human safety. In regions where wild animals are accustomed to
human food, the number of human-animal confrontations rises considerably.
By the 1970s researchers understand that the increase of aggressive bears
in national parks was tied to accessibility of human garbage. Solutions
needed to be found. One of the most successful remedies is the Haul-All
The device has a few key features. It is constructed of strong metal, can
be anchored to a concrete slab and is, thus, capable of withstanding heavy
impact. What really sets the Haul-all's design apart from other refuse
containers, however, is a lid that can resist a curious bear paw.
Haul-All president, Jacob Neufeldt working with advice from University of
Calgary professor Steve Herroro, created a garbage bin lid that bears
cannot open. The first prototype design used a lid opened by a door-style
handle. Bears could open it. To get to the desired end, they approached
the problem from biology. A human arm can twist 180 degrees. A bear's limb
cannot. The Haul-All team designed a latch to open the lid that was
protected by an overhanging lip. To open the garbage bin, one has to turn
their hand so that the palm faces upwards, and then lift the latch up to
the lip. Humans can open it, bears cannot.
In Jasper National Park, after the bins were put in place, the numbers of
problem bears that had to be relocated plummeted. Studies suggest that the
use of the bins has led to an economic benefit thanks to a decrease in
bear damage to human property. The bins have been a success for Albertas
parks and communities and for Haul-All Equipment Systems. Their bear-proof
bin has become the industry leader and standard.
Click here for more information on this innovative Alberta company
Haul All Waste & Transfer
: Bear-Proof Bin
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