ecomaine to celebrate waste and recycling hauling community, focus on safety

Following a year in which essential services took on a whole new meaning, ecomaine will celebrate the drivers and crews that collect Maine’s recycling and trash, and who have done so throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

On June 24 between 10:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m., ecomaine will provide bagged lunches to the haulers who arrive at ecomaine in thanks for their daily work to provide this critical service to Mainers. 

“The drivers and collection crews that pick up Maine’s recycling and waste are some of the most unsung heroes in Maine,” said ecomaine CEO Kevin Roche.  “These are the people who ensure our cleanliness and public health every single day, but they often go unthanked.  We are grateful for their service to Maine residents, and for their partnership with ecomaine.”

A pamphlet of safety advice and recommendations will accompany the lunch, in recognition of the dangers of the job.  According to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, those in waste collection face the sixth-highest fatality rate of any occupation in the country, with more than 35 deaths per 100,000 full-time workers.

Added Roche, “There has been increased awareness over the last decade, in terms of the safety of our waste collectors.  However, the fact that these preventable injuries and deaths are still happening at a high rate should give us all pause.”