U.S. Landfill Injuries Increased in 2009

The injury rate for solid waste collection workers in the U.S. decreased by more than 21% last year, according to figures from the U.S. Department of Labor and released this week by the National Solid Wastes Management Association (NSWMA). According to the department, the injury and illness rate for solid waste collection workers fell to 6.1% per 100 full time employees in 2009, down from 7.7% the year before. The injury rate for landfill employees increased marginally from 5.5 to 5.9. As recently as 2006, the rates for solid waste collection and landfill employees were 8.0. David Biderman, safety director at NSWMA, said: "The slight increase in landfill worker injuries demonstrates we need to keep looking for ways to keep industry employees safer. We need to continue striving for additional safety improvements in the future." Biderman continued: “Based on injury data that I have reviewed, I suspect that many small companies, particularly haulers who are not NSWMA members, have injury rates well above the national averages.” ### - Advice on keeping collection operatives safe can be found here.