State Lawmakers push forward bill to protect garbage workers - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

State Lawmakers push forward bill to protect garbage workers

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LEE COUNTY, GA (WALB) -

State representatives hope to protect garbage truck workers.

If this bill becomes law, drivers could be fined as much as 500 dollars for not slowing down or stopping if necessary while workers are collecting trash.

Everyday dozen of Trans Waste workers travel around Lee County and surrounding areas to collect trash.  Sometimes it's a dangerous job.

If you're driving near a truck, it's important to slow down and sometimes stop.

"This day and time there is a lot of distracted drivers. Any time you need to pay attention, but watch out for these truck drivers and especially these trash trucks that are stopping just like the mail man. They are out there picking up trash and its got to get gone so pay attention," Lee County Code Enforcement Officer Ben Roberts.

House Bill 762 would require that vehicles approaching trash trucks slow down and pass if allowable or stop and wait if passing is not allowed by a double yellow line.

Companies like Transwaste have made some changes to make conditions safer for their workers.

These days companies are using automated trucks, which not  only saves money, but reduces injuries in the field.

At Transwaste, about 70 percent of their trucks are now automated, which means they only need one operator and workers no longer have to ride on the back.

These days people are more distracted than ever before because of technology at your fingertips

"The things people have now. They are more distracted. You got technology at your fingertips, on face book going down the road and texting or whatever. Just not paying attention," says Roberts

Automated trucks are also more efficient and can pick up more trash. Transwaste also services Terrell, Turner, and Sumter Counties.

Copyright 2014 WALB.  All rights reserved.

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