Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Green Job Hazards

Recycling: Collection

Facts

  • In 2008, the fatality rate for the waste management and remediation services industry was over 5 times the fatality rate for all industries.1

  • Nearly 60% of these fatalities were transportation related

Worker Fatalities

  • A worker was collecting recyclable materials, exited the truck and walked to the rear of the vehicle. The truck rolled backwards and the rear wheel crushed the worker.

  • A worker was in the bed of a container truck removing unwanted debris when a bulldozer dumped a load of debris into the bed of the truck, burying and asphyxiating the worker.

Collection is one of the most dangerous activities in the recycling industry. Tragically, workers have lost their lives due to being backed-over by trucks, or struck by on-coming vehicles as they were exiting the trucks they were driving. These fatal accidents can be prevented by taking proper precautions.

In addition to vehicle accidents, collecting recyclable material involves other hazards, such as potential lifting injuries; slips, trips and falls; and cuts and abrasions. For more detailed information about these hazards and associated protective measures, visit the links below.

Hazards and Precautions

Facts

  • In 2008, the fatality rate for the waste management and remediation services industry was over 5 times the fatality rate for all industries.1

  • Nearly 60% of these fatalities were transportation related

Worker Fatalities

  • A worker was collecting recyclable materials, exited the truck and walked to the rear of the vehicle. The truck rolled backwards and the rear wheel crushed the worker.

  • A worker was in the bed of a container truck removing unwanted debris when a bulldozer dumped a load of debris into the bed of the truck, burying and asphyxiating the worker.


1 Hours-based fatality rates by industry, occupation, and selected demographic characteristics, 2008

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