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The Ohio Senate unanimously approved SB 127, legislation that would protect workers in the waste and recycling industry on the state’s roadways. This vital legislation, commonly referred to as Slow Down to Get Around (SDTGA), is designed to protect waste and recycling workers.

 

The legislation would require motorists, when they approach a stationary vehicle displaying flashing, oscillating, or rotating lights, to:

  • Proceed with caution and yield the right-of-way, if possible with due regard to safety and traffic conditions, by making a lane change into a lane not adjacent to that of the stationary vehicle, if on a roadway having at least four lanes with not less than two lanes proceeding in the same direction as the approaching vehicle; or
  • Proceed with due caution and reduce the speed of the vehicle, maintaining a safe speed for road conditions, if changing lanes would be unsafe or impossible.

This effort was led in the Ohio state Senate by Senator Frank LaRose (R), Chairman of the Transportation, Commerce and Workforce Committee. The legislation now goes to the Ohio state House of Representatives.

The most recent data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that the waste and recycling collection occupation ranks fifth in the nation for fatal work injury rates. It shows that many accidents involving waste and recycling collection workers are caused by inattentive motorists or distracted driving.

“Currently 16 states that have enacted Slow Down to Get Around laws, including Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Virginia, Wisconsin, and West Virginia. We are encouraged by the vote in the state senate that Ohio will become the 17th state,” said Peggy Macenas, NWRA’s director for the Midwest Region.

Slow Down to Get Around is a nationwide campaign by NWRA and its state chapters. In all states, NWRA encourages motorists to be aware of the roadside dangers facing waste and recycling collection workers. NWRA is asking the media, public safety and transportation agencies to educate motorists about the new law.

Published in the December 2017 Edition of American Recycler News