Scrap Metal Changes

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by Dunbar Plumbing, Feb 12, 2007.

  1. Dunbar Plumbing

    Dunbar Plumbing Master Plumber

    Apr 18, 2005
    Service Plumber, Outdoor Temperature Relief Owner
    Northern Kentucky/Greater Cincinnati Area
    Watch the video below,

    I personally know the business owner that this directly affects. He shut his doors last week to avoid the slow death that would of ensued if he started acting like Hawaii Five-0 to his customers.

    What this entails is one leader out of a group of many trying to appease the thousands with his approach to limit crime. In the war of words though, all this guy has done has lost another business for his community, knocked out a considerable tax base and leaves the community that needs a business like that.

    Think about it, watch the amount of scrap that comes in knowing that indirectly that cleans your town up, that's a fact. I know the majority will go elsewhere now to scrap out but

    would you submit your driver's license, a picture of yourself and know your scrap will be held for 72 hours for possible collection of evidence?

    From business man to business man, I'm appalled at this move because I know first hand when this copper theft became a hot news topic....this guy who owned the business had a great deal of trouble with all the problems of those who walked through his door now cashing in on the quick payout.

    He was already having them sign receipts, taking down license plate numbers and model/makes of the vehicle. He WAS cooperating with police fully when there was a potential lead to stolen material.

    Scrap metal recycling has been going on for years; this latest action is premature to something that could of been controlled other than the above remedy.
  2. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Sep 1, 2004
    Yakima WA
    If I had legal scrap to sell, why would I have a problem? This seems very reasonable to me. I have to believe that someone going out of business rather than complying was looking for an excuse.
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  4. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Aug 17, 2004
    Bothell, Washington
    The theft has been pretty blatant in the Seattle area.

    In Thurston County, they have been cutting down power poles with chain saws to steal wire.

    In Seattle, a man dressed up like a construction worker along the freeway and took thousands of feet of wire while other real crews worked nearby.

    In cemetarys, they have stolen hundreds of brass flower vases, what cost $80 to buy, has been "recycled" for $3
  5. Dunbar Plumbing

    Dunbar Plumbing Master Plumber

    Apr 18, 2005
    Service Plumber, Outdoor Temperature Relief Owner
    Northern Kentucky/Greater Cincinnati Area

    Well, that's not the reason. The owner has to comply with "tag and hold" which means he would have to double his 7500 square foot building to 14,000 square feet to allow for the volume he does. $200,000 costs incurred for that move.

    This along with hiring of 2 to 3 more employees to do the extra work load.

    Funny thing is, this guy did very well in the past few years and was wanting to get out of the biz altogether. He wasn't following local politics and got bit by the latest happening. He was listed with a company to sell @ 12%.

    Instead of getting a million for his business, he's getting the skeleton remains which will equate to a 1/4 mil.

    Last couple years he was doing 2 mil a year without a problem.

    When he would refuse to buy scrap from someone questionable.......they would run, not walk out of his building for fear of getting caught.

    I couldn't tell you how much "illegal" passes through the building. I will say that no preventative means makes it foolproof though. Hell I'm legal (last time I looked down in my pants) and I don't want to have to give out my personal info in that manner. Might have to if they follow suit and what if the "tag and hold" system gets screwed up and they point fingers at me directly when before I was a nobody to what I brought?

    Hell Terry, they are stealing guardrails off the sides of the roads up in this area. Nuts and bolts included for the weight. It's crazy along with people purposely hitting aluminum light poles.


    The average joe who "might" be a criminal and not stealing scrap may not want to give out ID or have their photo taken. Being in the scrap business, you deal with the riff-raff.
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2007
  6. TedL

    TedL New Member

    Sep 17, 2006
    NY Capital District
    This is really a problem when a locality like a city does this, as there are close-by competitors who don't face the added cost. The thieves will just drive a couple miles more to get the better price, while recyclers in the city are driven out of business.

    Of course, even if KY passed the law, Ohio's so close to Covington the thieves would just have to cross the river. IIRC, "Cincinnati" Airport is in Covington.
  7. Randyj

    Randyj Master Plumber

    Nov 25, 2006
    Since I'm not in the business I have no way of knowing what the impact would be on a business. However, I can tell you that I was very hurt and upset when the theives hit me several times just for my scrap copper. They took a couple of reels of computer wire and some very heavy copper leads as well as some a/c units ($5000.00 !!!!!) For lots of people it wouldn't have been much but for me it could be very painful financially if I had to replace the wire. The worst thing is that it knocked me out of a couple of jobs where I could have used the wire/cables...I'm sure they got a couple hundred dollars out of it but it would cost me a few thousand if I had to replace it. I have no pity for them. As for the recyclers, around here they don't flinch when the trash comes in. I sold several trailer loads of discarded metals while cleaning up to move...and over $1000 in just scrap iron from one demo job. No questions asked other than driver's license info at one place. The other didn't ask for anything. For a while Birmingham started harassing the sellers of scrap because there is an old law on the books requiring a junk dealers license but the cost was so expensive that no one would buy them....and junk began to pile up on the streets till they quit checking for license while people were in line to sell scrap.
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