Wisconsin’s bill to protect waste workers’ safety in the state has been signed into law.
Gov. Scott Walker signed the Slow Down to Get Around Act, which is supported by the waste and recycling industry. The law doubles the minimum and maximum fines for reckless driving and certain speeding violations. It has specific provisions for violations committed around waste vehicles, the National Solid Wastes Management Association (NSWMA) said in a news release.
“It’s critically important, for everyone’s safety, to slow down to get around garbage trucks,” said Fred Radandt, president of Manitowoc, Wis.-based Manitowoc Disposal Inc., and chairman of the NSWMA Wisconsin chapter. “We applaud Gov. Walker and the Wisconsin legislature for supporting enhanced safety for motorists and for waste and recycling industry employees. Trash collection is a tough job with many challenges, and we want to be sure our workers return home safely to their families every night.”
The bill was introduced by Rep. John Jagler (R-Watertown) and co-sponsored by state Sen. Paul Farrow (R-Pewaukee). Jagler authored the bill following an accident that happened to one of his constituents, Mark Friend, a sanitation worker. Friend lost a leg after being pinned between a vehicle and a waste truck while emptying a trash container.
David Biderman, vice president for government affairs for the NSWMA, has said the association will look for opportunities to enact similar legislation in other states.