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News Story
Updated: 11/14/2017 08:30:00AM

Residents seek smaller carts, bear-proof cans

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COURTESY PHOTO/KODIAK PRODUCTS

In a promotional photo from Kodiak Products, a grizzly bear attempts to open a sample of the company's 'Kodiak Can.' The company claims to have a can that bears can't open, but that will open when lifted and tilted by an automated garbage collection truck.

PHIL ATTINGER/STAFF

One of these things is not like the other, although they are kind of the same. Highlands County Public Information Officer Gloria Rybinski demonstrates, from left to right, the 95-gallon garbage cart, 65-gallon recycling bin and 35-gallon garbage can, all available for Waste Connections and all compatible with the automated collection trucks. Rybinski and Waste Connections officials warn, however, residents who opt for the small can may find it's not enough for a week of garbage, especially during the holidays.

COURTESY PHOTO/HIGHLANDS COUNTY BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS

A pallet of 10 Kodiak Products garbage cans, minus one that is undergoing testing, sits in storage at the Highlands County Natural Resources department. Part of a pilot study, they will soon be distributed, by drawing, among the 30 households of Mini-Ranch Estates, where bear encounters have reportedly been rampant.

COURTESY PHOTO/KODIAK PRODUCTS

In a promotional photo from Kodiak Products, a grizzly bear attempts to open a sample of the company's 'Kodiak Can.' The company claims to have a can that bears can't open, but that will open when lifted and tilted by an automated garbage collection truck.

By PHIL ATTINGER

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SEBRING — Residents returning to Highlands County have made a specific request of Waste Connections: 35-gallon roller cans to replace the standard 95-gallon carts.

In addition to that, residents in one rural county neighborhood hope that the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission will award a BearWise grant to the county, to acquire bear-resistant, rolling garbage cans that will work with Waste Connections’ automated trucks. The county has 10 such cans already, as part of a pilot study, but needs more to serve that community of 30 homes. As for the 35-gallon cans, Waste Connections has run out, for now.

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