It’s a well-known fact that refuse collection is one of the top five most dangerous jobs in America. And companies, along with the National Waste and Recycling Association and the Solid Waste Association of North America, are ramping up their safety efforts to keep both employees and customers safe on the job.
Recently, Waste Pro employee Angel Veloz spoke with The Atlantic about the dangers of being a trash collector.
The Atlantic has the full interview:
Taking out the trash is usually a chore assigned to a parent or teenager in the household. But once that trash hits the curb, it’s someone else’s job to pick it up. And America produces a lot of trash: According to the Environmental Protection Agency, Americans generate 254 million tons of trash a year. That trash is then hauled away by the nearly 120,000 waste workers in the U.S., some of whom make as much as $100,000 a year. Competition for these jobs is fierce in some cities; in places like New York City, the acceptance rate for those applying to become sanitation workers is just 1 percent.
Refuse collection is one of the top five most dangerous jobs in America. Waste workers deal with heavy and dangerous equipment daily, and according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the fatal injury rate for waste collectors is 33 per 100,000—ahead of policemen, construction workers, and miners.