In 1978 I was Chief of Storage in Riyadh for the Corps of Engineers and Pacific Architects and Engineers for about four months until my family arrived to join me in relocating to Jeddah on the Red Sea. Our work site was about two kilometers over open desert brush fields from the newly constructed Marriott Hotel where the U. S. Air Force aerial surveillance team were quartered. When I arrived there were at least 130 forty-foot shipping containers ready to be opened and unloaded into our new warehouse.
One evening on the daily trash run, two Somali bothers took the warehouse truck to dispose of the day’s excess materials to the central waste dump, but the guys were anxious, weary, and lazy and deliberately unloaded it in an open brush field not far from the hotel. They were observed by the Saudi police arrested, jailed overnight, given a citation, and the Corps office was notified. The next day our organization was tasked to clear and clean the entire extensive area of all trash no mattering we had only a very few unauthorized load drops there, if that? But we had been caught in the act.
The company procurement office, headed by a shrewd or perhaps deliberately incompetent Philippine manager wrote the boiler plate contract to clear the abundant scrap materials lying about the desert fields nearby. In the contract the manager failed to specify the size of the truck (s) to be utilized to haul away the scrap etc. to the central disposal yard. Each truck was paid by the trip and not by weight or count whether it carried 400 lbs. or tons or no matter how much it carried or not carry per load. The small light vehicles like pickup trucks got the same rate per load as larger cargo trucks.
On the day to begin the clean up and relocation approximately 80 trucks and two forklifts showed up. Perhaps seven our of each ten were the size of pickups or light trucks and could at most carry a light ton of miscellaneous trash and scrap material. Paid by the trip with the advantage of light loads contractors and perhaps the Procurement Manager really cleaned up by costing the project a lot more $ money than intended. The task took near three days when it should have been one and indirectly, directly cost the Corps, U. S. Government thousands of unnecessary additional dollars to clear the mess.
The sharp procurement manager was a nice fellow and we all liked the chap. The Corps Engineers with our director, a retired Air Force General, gave our contract performance a 98% evaluation that month despite another one or two fiascos like the one mentioned above. (Forty rows of overloaded newly erected Link shelving collapsed in a cloud of dust one lunchtime killing one cat. When I arrived the dust was so thick pouring out of the main gateway, I thought it a hot on going fire)
Each month or so it was my practice to give a humorous low-cost award to the most outstanding team or department leader. Because of screw-ups like this one they were not always for merit. On the Arabian desert it was not too uncommon to find dried bones scattered about, some of which were goat skulls. We found the best one we could, framed it and presented it to the Procurement Manager in my office. I kept a Polaroid photo of the humorous two-minute ceremony for years before discarding it during lengthy travels.
Years later, I, we, thought back of being much too hard on the manager because the loads lay diverse and widely scattered sometime in small quantities. However the cause of the expensive operation was tantamount to dropping a tissue and plastic bottle on a main street and having to clear and clean the entire avenue and back allies too.
All the Best to you.