Incorporating moving floor trailers into the landfill environment not only offers safety considerations and efficiency, but also the ability to haul a variety of materials and handle larger volumes, enabling operators to maximize the potential of the fleet through backhauling.
By Mike Robinson

Improving efficiency is the goal for every landfill operator, private or public. Safety, then efficiency are the key concerns when choosing a trailer unloading system. Moving floors offer several advantages at the landfill, including fast unloading and the ability to unload at nearly any location.

Key Considerations
Employee safety and the tightening labor market are key considerations when operators choose to outfit their fleet with moving floor trailers. Moving floor systems allow the material to be loaded and unloaded without the need for hands-on labor. Worker safety is a major concern and companies are looking for technology that helps support a safer, more productive environment for employees.

Trailers with moving floor systems safely unload on uneven ground, provide a controlled material discharge, and can unload in windy conditions. Trailers can also unload adjacent to other equipment, which is not recommended for tipping or dump trailers due to the increased risk of overturning the trailer.

This can improve both safety and efficiency at the landfill. During peak operating times, trailers can be positioned closer to each other during unloading without compromising safety. This also increases the efficiency of other landfill equipment, as dozers and front-end loaders can work in consolidated areas to compact the waste.


Horizontal discharge of moving floor trailers allows for side-by-side unloading, without risk of tipping over.
Photos courtesy of KEITH Manufacturing.

Walking Trailers
The hydraulically driven unloading systems feature a series of floor slats that “walk” material out the rear of the trailer. Trailers unload horizontally without the need to raise the trailer, eliminating the risk of tipping over or hitting overhead hazards with a tilted trailer bed.

In addition to safety considerations, many waste haulers choose moving floor unloaders over belt trailers because of the ability to handle a larger cubic capacity and less maintenance. Today’s operator must make the most of their trailer and backhauling can double the efficiency of a fleet. A moving floor trailer can easily handle waste, recycled materials, scrap, compost, and many other bulk materials.


Moving floor trailers can increase landfill efficiency because dozers and compactors can safely work adjacent to the trailer as it unloads.

Flooring Type
Flooring is available in a range of profiles and thickness, including designs featuring ridges for impact absorption. While most standard flooring is aluminum, steel varieties are available for heavy-duty applications or for unloading abrasive loads.

Factors such as material abrasion, how the trailer will be loaded, and if the trailer flooring needs to support forklift traffic, should be considered when choosing the flooring type. Unloading very abrasive materials, like gravel or top, loading a floor that is not recommended for those uses, can cause the slats to wear at a faster rate. Selecting flooring designed to match the material being unloaded will minimize wear and tear, optimizing the trailer’s performance and efficiency.

Maximize the Potential
Incorporating moving floor trailers in the landfill environment offer benefits beyond safety considerations and efficiency. The ability to haul a variety of materials and handle larger volumes, enable operators to maximize the potential of the fleet through backhauling. | WA

Mike Robinson is sales director for KEITH Manufacturing Co., an industry leader in providing innovative conveying and unloading solutions with its WALKING FLOOR® line of products. During his nearly 30 years with the company, Mike has developed a customer team focused on providing an exceptional level of service and expertise in material handling. For more information, visit