In the Earley household, it’s Damian’s job to take out the trash and recycling. It’s been this way since the 17-year-old junior who attends Whetstone High was 7. It’s also Damian’s job to clean up the mess that’s made when the family’s trash container tips over and spills its contents. After said container tipped over one too many times, Damian decided he had had enough and invented what he calls The Garbage Lot, a locking platform that uses sand or water to weigh down a garbage or recycling receptacle.

The receptacles are secured by a hook attached to an axle. On a recent Wednesday, Damian showcased a wooden prototype he and his father built a few years back. He said it’s since held up against the gale force winds Columbus sometimes has. For the invention, Damian in 2021 won the Patent Application Award at the Invention Convention U.S. Nationals, a K-12 invention program. As the award’s name suggests, Damian received advice on how to patent The Garbage Lot.

Fast forward to the present day and Damian has received his patent from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, giving him the exclusive right to make, use and selling his invention for a certain period of time. The next steps are finding a buyer for the patent. Early said he plans to use the money from the sale to help pay for college.

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Author: Monroe Trombly, The Columbus Dispatch, Yahoo! News
Image: The Columbus Dispatch, Yahoo! News