Sanitation workers can face significant safety risks when performing their duties. This includes risks of getting harmed by distracted drivers when out on their pickup routes. Just how high danger levels can get for such workers can be seen in federal workplace fatality data.
This data is from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. It indicates that, in 2017, refuse and recyclable material collectors had the nation’s 5th highest workplace fatality rate among civilian occupations. This rate was 35 deaths for every 100,000 full-time workers
Unfortunately, it appears that 2019 is already on its way to seeing a considerable number of sanitation worker deaths. According to the Solid Waste Association of North America, 17 such workers died on the job in the U.S. and Canada in the year’s first three weeks. The organization is pressing for a renewed focus on safety among workers and employers in the industry.
What do you think are currently the biggest safety problems in the sanitation industry? What efforts do you think should be taken to address these problems? What do you think is key in keeping sanitation workers protected on the job?
When the dangers of their job lead to injuries, sanitation workers typically can pursue workers’ comp claims. What happens with these claims can have big impacts on what resources a worker will ultimately have to deal with the various effects the injury could have on his or her life, finances and future. Workers’ comp lawyers can assist workers with navigating issues related to such claims.