Section V. GARBAGE, RUBBISH, AND INFECTIOUS WASTES
4-22. GARBAGE DISPOSAL
Garbage is the solid or semisolid waste resulting from the preparation, cooking,
and serving of food. It does not include rubbish. Garbage is disposed of by burial or
a. Burial. On the march, in bivouac, or in camps, of less than one week's
duration, garbage is buried in pits or trenches. These pits or trenches should not be
over 30 yards from the dining area and must not be closer than 100 feet to any source
of water used for drinking or cooking.
(1) Pit. A pit four feet square and four feet deep is suitable for one day for a
unit of 100 men. At the end of the day or when the pit is filled to within about one foot of
the surface, the pit is sprayed with insecticide, filled in with earth, and mounded over
with an additional foot of compacted earth.
(2) Trench. Sometimes a continuous trench two feet wide and four feet deep
may be used for the burial of garbage. The length of the trench depends upon the
length of time it is to be used. The trench is extended as required. Dirt that is removed
to extend the trench is used to cover the garbage that has been added during the day.
b. Incineration. If burial is not practicable, incinerators are constructed for use
in the field. Excellent types of open incinerators may be constructed from materials that
are readily available in any camp area. Since incinerators will not handle wet garbage,
it is necessary to separate the liquid from the solid portion. This is done by straining the
garbage with a coarse strainer such as an old bucket, salvaged can, or a 55-gallon
drum in which holes have been punched in the bottom. The solids remaining in the
strainer are incinerated and the liquids are poured through a grease trap into a soakage
pit or trench. Field incinerators should be located at least 50 yards downwind from the
camp to prevent their odor from being a nuisance.
(1) Inclined plane incinerator. The inclined plane incinerator (figure 4-17) will
dispose of garbage of an entire battalion, evacuation hospital, or other unit of similar
size. Its effectiveness in combustion and the fact that it is somewhat protected from rain
and wind make it an excellent improvised device. Time and skill, however, are required
in building it. A sheet metal plane is inserted through telescoped 55-gallon drums from
which the ends have been removed. The metal plane should extend approximately two
feet beyond the upper end of the telescoped drums to serve as a loading or stoking
platform. The telescoped drums are positioned on an inclined surface. A grate is
placed at the lower end of the telescoped drums to catch the garbage that is to be
burned. A wood or fuel oil fire is under the grate. After the incinerator becomes hot,
drained garbage is placed on the loading platform. As the garbage becomes dry, it is
pushed through the telescoped drums in small amounts to burn. Final burning takes
place on the grate.