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Sweeping Is A Funny Business

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Sweeping Is A Funny Business

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Rolls Royce Sweeper

The Maharaja's Rolls Royce Sweeper Fleet

This story from India shows what can happen when people are judged by their appearance. It also illustrates that no matter how 'high flying' your company's brand might be, it can be taken down with a mistake in judgment!

The world's most famous car brand, Rolls Royce, is also associated with the Indian continent's Rajasthan. That's because a famous buyer of this car was the Maharaja of Alwar, who always bought three automobiles at a time. One day during his visit to London, Maharaja Jai Singh was walking in casual dress on Bond Street. He saw a Rolls Royce showroom and went inside to inquire about the price and features of their cars. The showroom salesmen thought he was a poor Indian. They insulted him and showed him the way out. The Maharaja's revenge was sweet...
Read all about it.

Indiana Man Steals Sweeper; Goes on a Joyride


Apparently not the brightest bulb on the tree – and one might think old enough to know better – 54-year-old Sammy Allen of Richmond, Indiana chose an offbeat way to have a little excitement in his home town on a Sunday night in September 2022. To liven up his evening, he stole himself a street sweeper and led police on a high-speed, er, low-speed, chase through the city.

With great play-by-play analysis by an onlooker who calls himself the 'Batman of Richmond,' at the YouTube link you can see 1:39 of video showing the somewhat hilarious chase conducted by the Richmond police department.

Check out the story and video.

Walmart Announces Big Changes in Sweeping Program

Walmart Logo Anim

On April 1, 2022, we published a story discussing how big changes in method of operation had been made by Walmart, America's largest employer. These changes were ALL to the benefit of the parking lot sweeping contractors who perform sweeping and other services for the retail giant.

The April 1st message even prompted a message from the firm to Walmart's 'vendor partners,' which is included as a link.

To read our tongue-in-cheek story about how Walmart changed to include the many changes long sought by the power sweeping community, use the link below. Check out the story.

Can You Identify This Sweeper?


This photo of a sweeper attached to an Indian motorcycle was sent to us by Karl Stauty, principal of Commercial Power Sweeping. We displayed the photo on WorldSweeper's home page for several months until in September of 2022 we learned what it was from long-time sweeper personality, Peter Federico, who has over 35 years of experience in the power sweeping industry.

Federico, who at the time was the Sales Manager at ODRA Sweeper Company, identified the motorcycle-attached sweeper as a Bucher-Shorling. When asked if he'd like to receive the prize we offered of a scale model of a Johnston sweeper, he said he wouldn't mind, especially if Johnston (now Bucher) would present it to him at the upcoming APWA event. And, although due to technical issues we didn't get a photo of the hand-off, Bucher's Product Marketing Manager, Matthew Starnes, did just that at the next PWX Show.

Wildlife Sanctuary Teaches Kangaroos To Pick Up Litter


On April 1, 2017 we reported about the amazing job the Currumbin Wildlife Center staff has done at teaching two of their female kangaroos to collect litter, stuff it into their pouches, and then trade it for treats.

Responders to this story included a YouTube link to a baby elephant caught on CCTV camera picking up and depositing litter into a waste bin all on its own.

Finally, another reader responded that "any animal could do better than Laurel and Hardy," along with sending a brief YouTube clip of those gentlemen's antics in cleaning up on a military base.

To read our tongue-in-cheek story about how kangaroos are trained for litter patrol, use the link below. Check out the trained kangaroos.

Futuristic Street Sweeper Makes Litter Cleanup Look Fun


Renderings are awesome. It's at the drawing board, whether it be physical or virtual, that those wanting to build a better—or even a more insane—vehicle can think outside the box and dream up some out-of-this-world designs that would look good on wheels or tracks.

Resembling a robotic anteater with two opposable snouts scoping the ground, the vision of a future street sweeper is a far cry from the comparatively clunky units that clean up our streets today.

Check out this vision for the future of street sweeping.

Calgary Stampede 'Sweeper Critters' Retired After 13 Years – New Ones Now on the Job

New Calgary Critters

In Calgary, Alberta – which is located in the western portion of Canada – there has been a tradition of affixing giant 'street sweeper critters' onto the city's sweepers for cleaning up after the City's celebrated Calgary Stampede festivity events.

In 2001, the City introduced parade watchers to Dixie, Samson, Rocky and Alfalfa, four critters created by a local puppeteer that were fitted onto street sweepers used to clean up the parade route. The four traveled the City's parade circuit for the last time on July 4th of 2014. Reportedly, the four critters will be transferred to 'greener pastures.'

In 2015 the City introduced four new 'critters' that will adorn the City's sweeper fleet during the Stampede. These are a cow, a bull, a horse and a bison.

You can see photos of the first generation critters and read the initial story, or read about and see the new set of animals.. Check out the first 'Calgary Critters,' or check out the second generation Calgary Critters.

Combo Machine Replaces Three Municipal Vehicles

In an announcement made April 1, 2014, a new three-in-one combination vehicle is a sweeper, a garbage truck and a snowplow.

According to the notice that was sent out, very few modifications are needed to switch between the three usages. Check it out.

Street Cleaning Simulator 2011

PC-based street sweeping simulator available from UK-based Excalibur Publishing Ltd. simulates operation of a Ravo-type sweeper.

"Brush off the dirt and make a clean sweep as you embark on a career to become an accomplished street cleaner. Use your highly detailed sweeping machines to roam the city in search of muck. As your experience grows so will the tasks you have to deal with!" Get swept up into fighting the flotsam and jetsam of city life with Street Cleaning Simulator!" Check it out.

Colored Runners

Contractor Captures Colorful Contract With 'Color Me Rad' Company

This story charts the success of Virginia-based Commercial Power Sweeping in cleaning up after a VERY colorful event, a Color Me Rad 5k run.

The concept of the run, which is held over a course laid out on grass, is that runners are pelted with colorized cornstarch packets throughout the race. The packets are non-toxic and have been determined to have zero environmental impact, which is a good thing since an incredible number of packets are thrown, both along the course and especially at the parking lot that represents the finish line.
Read all about it.

NASA Announces Power Sweeper for Spaceflight Mission

In an announcement made on April 1, 2010, NASA's administrator, Charles F. Bolden, Jr., announced a program that will send a suction-based power sweeper to the space station. In his announcement speech, Bolden said: "NASA intends to move the U.S. space program back to the forefront of our national consciousness through what we are calling our new 'Industrial Spaceflight Initiative.'

This Initiative will involve a series of launches that will include a broad spectrum of what I'd call 'real America.' To that end, the first in the series of launches will feature a segment of American industry that does not currently receive the widespread recognition it deserves." Read all about it.

What If Business School Reflected Reality?

For a dose of humor, the authors help contractors look back upon lessons learned while running their business. Read the story.

Street Sweeper Items for Sale at CafePress

You never know what you might find in the way of street sweeper items at CafePress. Here's a link to the current offerings under the search term "street sweeper." Take a look.

Life of Grime

This short (just under 10 minute) movie was made by the Vancouver (British Columbia, Canada) Film School. It discusses the work life of several members of Vancouver's city street sweeper operators. Although not particularly funny, it is well done and a good exploration of the nighttime experiences one might well see when running a sweeper in a big city at night.Take a look.

The Streetsweeper: A Movie of Sweeping Proportions.

This movie about street sweeping is worth seeing, if and when it comes to your area. Read the story.

'Swiss Army Sweeper' is Everyone's Dream Machine

Now here's the sweeper our industry needs! Read the story.

Never Good to Mix 'In The Drink' and Driving.

This Southampton, UK, sweeper operator found himself up to more than his axles in water. Read the story.

The Latest in Broom Sweeping Technology... Somewhere

An alert reader sent in this internet photo montage of wacky ways to do things. Although a sweeper is mixed into the group, you might want to make sure you're on a legitimate coffee break before checking these out. In PDF format. Check it out.

Here also is a link to a brief video of a similar sweeper, although seemingly much larger, sweeping a snowy roadway.

Here's a Corny Way to Use a Sweeper...

Need to get rid of a silo of corn, you say? Read the story.

Junkyard Wars show features pavement sweeper building by two teams.

Junkyard Wars Logo

Learning Channel program pits two teams competing to build a sweeper from junkyard parts. This story won a national writing award for our editor. Read the story.

Animal Rescue Extraordinaire.

Sweeping contractor's on-the-job saga about helping to remove a stuck yogurt container from a skunk's snout. Read the story.

When the Chips Were Down

When a storm blew a big tree down in his yard, this quick-thinking contractor devised a slick method to clean up the chips. Read the story.

Saga of the Chainsaw Gumshoe

When a conscientious backpack blower operator stopped to scrape up some gum, he found himself surrounded by police. Read the story.

Zoe, the Great Pyrenees: Sucked Into a Sweeper But Not Harmed

Zoe ran right at the sweeper and ended up inside. However, the tale has a happy ending. Read the story.

Street Sweeping Song Parodies

Here are some parodies of famous songs that have lyrics about sweeping.

AI-Powered Sweeping Drones Set to Revolutionize Urban Cleanliness

In a bold move that merges artificial intelligence with aerial agility, a pioneering company in urban sanitation announced on April 1st of 2024 the imminent deployment of a fleet of AI-powered sweeping drones.
Check out the story.

Japan Turns Trash Collecting Into Sporting Contest

SpoGomi, a combination of ‘sport’ and ‘gomi’ (Japanese for rubbish) is a popular competition in which teams of 3-5 people try to pick up the most trash of the highest quality in a set period of time. Japan recently announced that it would host the first SpoGomi World Cup in November of 2023, with teams from all over the world scouring the streets of Tokyo in search of trash to pick up.
Check out the info. Announces Change of Name to 'Intergalactic Sweeper'

InterplanetaryWSALogo150 On April 1, 2021, this World Sweeper website announced it was changing its name to Intergalactic Sweeper since (true story) Astroscale launched a Space Sweeper prototype designed to remove the 23,000+ pieces of satellite detritus from outer space.
Check out the announcement.

Seattle's Latest Street Sweeper Gets a New Name: Ok Broomer

Seattle's latest naming contest has just wrapped up, with the city's newest street and bike lane sweeper being named Ok Broomer. According to the Seattle Department of Transportation, the name gained over 1,500 votes on Twitter, securing the new name for the street sweeper.
Check out the new sweeper.

Bergstrom's "Do Everything Sweeper"

BergstromSweeperAd150_2019 Bergstrom is a maker of air conditioning for vehicles. In this instance it appears they're also in the 'do everything vehicle' production business! You have to admit that the photo makes it look as though this vehicle could make money for you any time, day or night, and regardless of the Season or the day of the week!

Street Sweeper Solves Neighborhood's Tumbleweed Invasion

TumbleOneAnim220 An Australian homeowner says she was out of ideas over how to get rid of a species of tumbleweed from her home. After posting images on social media asking for help with the plague of the grass – which was so out of control it forced the closure of the town's main road as it migrated across its path – a solution appeared in the form of a street sweeper.

Sweeper Brushes are Perth Zoo Elephants Favorite Enrichment Toys


This story Perth Zoo's resident elephants Tricia, Permai and Putra Mas regularly receive enrichment items such as tire swings and food puzzles – and a set of wornout sweeper brushes – to support their physical and mental well being. In fact, the set of old street sweeper brushes donated by City of South Perth have become their new favorite.

Chinese Sweeper Causes 'Cars to Fly'

Flying Cars
This story from China in December of 2015 is a good illustration of the venerable mantra "If something can go wrong, it will." On the other hand, this makes China one of the first countries to invent levitating cars!

Doctors in Uzbekistan Forced to Sweep Streets on Fridays

Uzbekistan has long been criticized for the practice of forced labor in its cotton industry, but local activists say the cotton fields are not the only place where authorities exploit public-sector workers. Human rights activist, Yelena Urlaeva, has documented what she described as doctors and other employees from Tashkent's N8 Family Clinic being forced to clean public spaces and a road near their workplace. Urlaeva said there were cardiologists and neuropathologists among the employees who took part in the clean-up as patients waited for treatment. Check it out.

Schwarze Breeze

Schwarze Announces Human-Powered SuperVac Breeze

On April 1, 2015, Schwarze Industries unveiled its new Human-Powered SuperVac BreezeTM parking lot sweeper. Although the new SuperVac Breeze has only a 1.0 cubic yard hopper, the machine does sport Swivelogic Chassis Technology and Tractionmaster 2-Wheel Drive Differential to go along with its unique, human-powered power source. If you're in the market for a low-cost sweeper at impossible-to-match pricing, this is the machine for you!

Driverless Sweeper

Google, Dyson Announce Self-Driving Street Sweeper

In an announcement made on April 1, 2015, James Dyson, Director of Dyson Company, and Lawrence E. Page, CEO of Google, made a joint announcement concerning the development of the AutoSweep 4115, the first ever self-driving sweeper.

Solar Sweeper

Chinese Manufacturer Announces First Solar-Powered Street Sweeper

In an announcement made on April 1, 2011, the world's first solar-powered sweeper was announced by Chinese firm, Chung Wah Sweeper Company. The regenerative air sweeper can reportedly operate entirely on solar during July, August; significant energy savings are offered the rest of the year.

The Sun Star Solar Sweeper is outfitted with a total of seven high-efficiency solar panels; two on each of the sides of the hopper and three on the top. Automatic rotation toward maximum solar gain is accomplished by a small DC motor attached to the base of each of the roof-mounted solar panels.
Read all about it.

Ravo Sweeping Company Offers Game Entitled 'Sweeping Mania'

In this computer video game, which is available for both Mac and PC platforms, your goal is to clear the city of trash and earn as many points as possible by doing so. Read the story.

Schwarze Breeze

Schwarze Announces Human-Powered SuperVac Breeze

On April 1, 2015, Schwarze Industries unveiled its new Human-Powered SuperVac BreezeTM parking lot sweeper. Although the new SuperVac Breeze has only a 1.0 cubic yard hopper, the machine does sport Swivelogic Chassis Technology and Tractionmaster 2-Wheel Drive Differential to go along with its unique, human-powered power source. If you're in the market for a low-cost sweeper at impossible-to-match pricing, this is the machine for you!

An Expensive Day at the Toll Booth

When Dean Davis forgot to use his automated turnpike fee card, the day became an expensive one. Read the story.

It'll Sweep the Hat Off Your Head

When Ray Slay's hat blew off, he found how much suction his sweeper had. Read the story.

Monster Garage's Jesse James Builds the World's Fastest Sweeper.

Imagine how it went down when Monster Garage went on a road trip to Petty Industries in North Carolina in October 2002, then worked with Tymco engineer, Bobby Brock, to build the world's fastest sweeper. Or, you can read the story or view the web page as a pdf file.

Save the Kitten

A little girl's kitten had fallen into a floor drain in a garage and was now 25 feet down in an impossible predicament. Read the story.

Will Prairie Dog Sucking Become the Newest Sweeper Sideline?

One of the most innovative uses for a suction system we've ever heard of. Read the story.

A 'New Page' in Sweeper Production

McKinley Page makes a fine line of miniature sweepers. Read the story.

Sweeper Truck Videos

Sweepers have been commemorated in some YouTube videos. Sweepers are used as props in some of the short videos. In others, they are backdrops for songs or part of an animation. Some are mechanized, others show people sweeping. The link below will take you to a page with a collection of internet videos that somehow involve sweepers. Quality varies widely... Have one to let us know about? Let us know! Take a look.

Mechanical Broom Cores Rub Cows the Right Way

A most innovative way to recycle old main broom cores. Read the story.

Here's a Series of our own Sweeper Cartoons for Your Laughing Pleasure

For a couple more sweeping-related cartoons, check out this link to

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