Residential Waste Collection: Hazard Recognition and Prevention

March 1982
DHHS (NIOSH) Publication Number 82-113
82-113 Cover

Data intended to assist residential waste collection employers, collectors, and worker representatives in identifying, evaluating, and eliminating the major hazards of refuse collection is presented. The text consists of two sections: part one discusses general waste hazards; and part two contains photographs and explanations to illustrate hazards encountered during refuse collection. The topics of load limitations, equipment maintenance, engineering controls, personal protective equipment and clothing, driver training, work pace, job satisfaction, riding position, personal hygiene practices, and preplacement physical examinations are addressed. Specific attention is directed toward occupational hazards associated with various traveling conditions (such as parking on hills), evaluating the load (including hidden chemical hazards), loading conditions (such as hand protection and slippery surfaces), and compacting and unloading conditions (such as exhaust fumes, entering the compactor, and visibility in the landfill). Specific NIOSH recommendations for protecting collectors and drivers are provided.